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Sunday, December 24, 2017

Secondary Textbook Courtroom Illustration

Wish you a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year. Thank you very much for a strong and incessant support all through 2017. This year, the last publication is Legal Maze, a secondary textbook published by Macmillan Education. I owe it to Anne Spudvilas's kindness and support (*she's a courtroom artist, excellent portraitist and amazing picture book illustrator -- yes, my superhero and our superstar in Australian publishing industry!). In this project, Macmillan and I wanted to include any background people in Australia, race, gender, age, occupation etc, etc. We're the Australians and same human beings. I set the female judge in an active Victorian courtroom, specifically, a county or supreme court demonstrating the positions of the judge, jury, accused, solicitors, witnesses etc, etc. We enjoyed this project so much. 

I hope I will grow as an artist and person in 2018. 
Friends, Happy Painting! 
Credit, Macmillan Education. 


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Monday, December 18, 2017

Back to Swimming

Good news. My fractured toe is healing well. I'm back to swimming! Swimming and exercises are recommended by a GP, but be careful not to hurt it again. Many people / regulars talked to me. It was very nice to see kind people. One lady, "You know me! This is my grand son!" showing her little boy with a full smile. Oh, sweet! Other families, "I haven't seen you for a long time!" "You will come, Sat, too?" etc, etc. Oh, it was wonderful. I really appreciate their friendship. Everyone was in a full smile on the beach. 
Sketching waves is so refreshing like swimming! Invitation to a ball at a beach. Dancing waves are in mint blue dresses in the afternoon. I love hearing their chatting, too. Come over! 

Now, it's nearly at the end of a year. How is your life in 2017? I'm still busy with projects though, I've enjoyed the projects and a journey of art. Thank you for a strong support. 

Friends, Happy Painting!  

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Sunday, December 17, 2017

Prof Ingrid Piller elected for Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities

Congrats, Prof Ingrid Piller, on your being elected for a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities Nov 2017, the highest honour for achievement in the humanities in Australia! Ingrid, the encounter of you, your teaching and the work with you are my inestimable treasure in life. Just the other day, I saw her and enjoyed a chat on the way to a bus stop in a campus. Here, the review of their team and a world leading sociolinguistics blog, Language on the Move2017. Ingrid has set up that blog in 2009 and today, it has grown up to a cutting-edge research blog. Great team! Linguists and people in linguistics have been backing up me since I started an art career. I deeply thank for anyone who has supported me this year. 


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Monday, December 11, 2017

Iroha poem and Japanese letters

I felt like drawing children in kimono. Do you like it? A girl in kimono is practising writing Japanese hirakana, "Iroha," a poem. Young Sadami enjoyed only writing rather than Iroha. Once upon a time, children memorised the poem to learn Japanese 50 sounds. The Iroha poem cleverly uses only once each letter and has a profound meaning of life like "Ecclesiastes," vanity of vanities. If I freely translate the meaning, here we go. 

"Like the scent of flowers perishes, my beauty has gone. 
Who can last forever on the earth? I walked out of deep mountains. 
In a daydream, I still felt the world clearly without being drunk."  
いろは歌 The Iroha-uta 
いろはにほへと ちりぬるを 
わかよたれそ つねならむ 
うゐのおくやま けふこえて 
あさきゆめみし ゑひもせす(ん) 
Many interpretations of the ihorha are available, because an old Japanese omits a subject. The hidden subject could be the crucial difference between Japanese and English in syntax. English always requires a subject in a sentence. Besides the unclear subjects, the old Japanese and poems do not show an identified punctuation. Once, young Sadami failed to remember the iroha (*Too young to get the meaning, but how many even grown-ups could understand the old Japanese today?). 

Anyway, I enjoyed writing on paper with sumi-ink! I might as well retry it one day. It's interesting that I can find some Chinese ink sets in an art supply that are different from a Japanese style. 
If you like kids in kimono, I'd post them from time to time. 
Friends, Happy Painting! 






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Monday, December 4, 2017

Australian Linguistics Society 50th Anniversary

My sketches of linguists will celebrate the Australian Linguistics Society 50th anniversary in the video presentation at the annual conference hosted by the Department of Linguistics in Sydney university where I studied. Graffiti are not bad in lectures that opened my door to art! Thank you, Lecturers, for your tolerance. Although an under-achiever, linguistics has enriched my life. 
I've met many linguists working for endangered languages. Above, Prof Michael Walsh is the expert of Aboriginal people's languages. His moustaches and beards were very historical and impressive. Kind Michael always welcomed me in his office at Sydney uni. 

I met a linguistic giant, all-round player and my super hero, Prof Anna Wierzbicka in a 2009 linguistics conference. Her deep and wide publications and research areas are really stunning...! This enthusiastic lady will never stop. Anna questions, "How can you explain astronomy, genetics, or ethics to children using words they understand; not only in Australia, but in other places” which is her recent research interest. Can we retell “Big stories of science and humanities in new and more intelligible ways"? 
Anna's challenge is my always concern. I want to know the methods and really want to make it happen in picture books. I've chosen a universal language, drawing, not written words. I feel, wordless picture books are the right approach to tackle the issues addressed by Anna and my big interest. Wow, what a lovely linguist and lady Anna is!!
Dr. Anna Wierzbicka  ( I used colour pencils in the 2008 conference). 
Once, I did volunteer work at ALS annual conferences, when I was at Sydney uni. During the conferences, we, students went out for coffee at a break. There was a market near to the uni. I could not help, but buy a big secondhand book, "Rembrandt" and held it tightly.... I was so happy with it!!! Other students teased at me, "Sadami gonna be a famous artist!" No!! I strongly denied it. I just loved Rembrandt's drawings and wanted to see his work at hand. In a shy manner, I looked down to the ground, holding the book on my chest. I had never, ever thought to be a visual artist. But I've become an artist. Unfortunately, the adjective, "famous" is inappropriate to me. That book silently stays in my studio. It reminds me of linguistics and uni days.... Once, I was an ALS memberI thank for lecturers who have encouraged me to be an artist and backed up me.  

I hope the conference will go well from 4 to 7 December and participants will fully enjoy them all. I've loved linguistics and shared time with linguists. Honestly, their brain level is super-smart that amazes me, dunce! But linguistics has allowed me to think of life and society. Linguistics also has assists me to analyse texts given for illustration. Today, when I say, "My hobby is linguistics (sociolinguistics and syntax)," often people laugh. Me, too laugh, although I'm quite serious?! Hahaha. 
Friends, don't forget, Happy Painting! 







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Thursday, November 30, 2017

WestWords New Centre!

WestWords launched a new centre in Parramatta. A key person, Libby Gleeson appreciated my image at a stairwell and encouraged me, "Go on, Sadami!" I did a tiny thing. A printer did it!(*He stands besides me in a photo).  Printing took 7 hours and pasting took 5 hours. The amazing staff worked carried it out. I admire the staff and my lovely little authors! This centre will nurture talents in Western Sydney. Special thanks to Helen ChamberlinAnn James, Ann Haddon and Margaret Hamilton for the text analysis and the illustration of students' writings!
This image, a print press and a storm of papers, stands around the stairwell across four walls.  


My super hero, Libby! She lobbied, fought for WestWords and sets it up to a current level. Libby made a change! Her speech really touched my heart. She moved a politician and found a break through. Then, she brought WestWords to today, the opening of a new office. Amazing. I'm sooooo proud of being taught by her regarding picture book illustration. Thank you for encouraging me and teaching me for ages.
Oh, you're my super heroes, too! How lucky I am to know you and have worked for this project! The staff worked day and night. 
Wonderful to see you, my little authors for an anthology, "The Writers' Club"! My used illustrations were all framed and displayed. Here's the photo! A principal, a teacher, parents and students enjoyed them all! 
Really lovely to catch up with Margaret Hamilton and Max after the mentorship program in Blue Mountains. You're so sweet and caring. Margaret asked me to sign the book.
When I left the centre, I donated the illustrations used for the students' book. WestWords greatly appreciated it. "Let's plant seeds. Make children happy," I said. I think that's all what I can do. Certainly the wonderful start. Now, from here, we have to make it happen. 
Like Libby encouraged me, I will produce good work in picture book illustration and fine art. I thank for all the people who have helped me. Yes, you, too, Friends.
Happy Painting!






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Monday, November 27, 2017

A New Huge Image on the Walls and a New Book Celebrate WestWords New Centre Lauch

WestWordsWestern Sydney's Young People’s Literature Development Organisation will launch a new centre on 28th Nov at 6 pm. I'll post photos in my facebook. A new cultural and arts hub. To celebrate its big step, WestWords will launch my illustrated North Parramatta primary school children's book (*not for sale, presents to the hardworking kids from non English speaking descendants), hang all the used illustrations and my image, below, enlarged will stay permanent on four walls, 2.8m x10,45 m, surrounding a stairwell. The staff has got so excited and me, too, in a frantically busy schedule! In the illustrations, I included children from any backgrounds. 
I really look forward to meeting my "authors," or the pupils. WestWords says that some children will read out the stories. Wow! WestWords ran a writing workshop for students and they worked hard in a writing club. An anthology book, "The Writers' Club" is truly a reward for a child. These books will be distributed to school libraries, too. 

Regarding a text analysis, Helen Chamberlin helped me, Books Illustrated (Ann James and Ann Haddon) gave suggestions incessantly and Margaret Hamilton AM gave me important feedback. WestWords staff has assisted me to create images. The students' writings are so precious in my eyes.  Any children are so gorgeous. They are our future. I hope they will remember this book in a tough time in life, get it through and reach their dreams. 
I deeply thank for anyone involved in this project and those who have supported me that makes my dream come true -- bring others love, hope and dream by my art activities. Finally, I quote the statistical data, a snap shot of Western Sydney people, culture and linguistic diversity, below. It clearly shows the importance of Western Sydney in Australia and indicates that young Western Sydney will have the great potential in rich cultural and socioeconomic phases.  
May this centre launch will cultivate Western Sydney and many talents will fledge out from WestWords!! Go, go, WestWords!! See you little authors at the party! 
Frineds, Draw On, Paint On and Create On!

WestWords demonstrates ; 







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Monday, November 20, 2017

Enjoyed the Friends' Exhibition

I've been very busy with the projects and involved with WestWords new office launch on 28th Nov. It will be a new cultural hub and writer's room in Western Sydney. 
In busy days, I gave myself a break to celebrate my friends, Diane Mah and Nancy MacAlpine's exhibition. It turned out a great success. Almost a half of work was sold at opening! Amazing! It's not easy to carry out the show on your own, but they turned it out a huge sucess. I congratulated their job done. We had a great fun night! 

Btw, I love capturing very a moment of a tiny movement -- Nancy noticed my sketching of her during the acclaimed artist Christopher Gentle's speech. She glanced at me and whispered, "You sketch me!?" and we smiled. Such a moment creates a lively and natural mood. Capturing the essence of the body language is beauty, I feel. I want to keep up drawing movement.   
Then, I love playing with colours on papers. Simple, free and bold, I want to be.
Once, I sketched Diane in Sydney Sketch Club meeting. It's really nice to encourage each other...and of course, fun to sketch each other!  
Guest speaker, Chris. His lovely and humorous speech often made us laugh and giggle. 

It's important to keep sketching, particularly, quick drawing in busy days. Otherwise, my hands get stuck and stiff = my brain gets stiff! I hope I will upload a fun post in a following week. 
Friends, Happy Painting! 




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Sunday, November 5, 2017

Great benefits of illustrator residency, illustrated writings to be published by WestWords

In the residency, I've achieved a lot with the strong support from Margaret Hamilton AM (Pinerolo) in beautiful Blue Mountains. I'll chat over,  
1) the finished up project.  
2) my huge benefits from the illustrator residency : skills, networking, social exposure by activated social media and set up future job opportunities. 
3) beautiful Blue Mountains tranquilised me. Plus, sightseeing. 
I could finish up illustrating of the 19 primary school students' imaginative and difficult texts from "rough" to "colour" in five days. The project aims at improving children's literacy and advocates students from non English speaking backgrounds. The publication is purely rewards for the children who worked hard to learn English writings = not for sale, to be published this Nov. I'll show my favourite illustration.  
"A human lived in a watch" 
"The Three Sisters" are just around a corner from Pinerolo.
Here's a post from Margaret Hamilton AM's fb
"Sadami Konchi's final day in residency. Here with the selection panel: Michael Campbell (WestWords), me (Pinerolo) and Linsay Knight (Walker Books) were the selection panel for this very successful project. On the table is the extraordinary amount of work she did during her week here: illustrations for childrens' stories to be published by WestWords. She's holding her gorgeous new book MY DOG SOCKS."  
So kind Mr, Mrs Hamilton promoted the mentree in lunch and the displayed the mentree's art work to the selection panel, WestWords and Walker BooksMargaret proudly displayed the art work and passionately spoke for the mentree. 
Photo courtesy credit on WestWords : Left to Right, 
WestWords, Sadami, Margaret, Walker Books. 
Image may contain: 4 people, people smiling, indoor
When WestWords selected me for Pinerolo mentorship program, the illustration project came to meWestWords is the Western Sydney’s Literature Development Organisation for Young People. I worked day and night to finish up the project with Margaret's great support. 
I was privileged to use this whole house for residency. 
The right side has a great research library. 
Margaret Hamilton AM and her husband Max have led the mentree with deep and broad knowledge, care, sensitivity, experience, wisdom and enthusiasm to pave a way for the mentree to access winder audience and social exposure in publishing industry. Pinerolo has also respected the mentree’s automacy, privacy and her own thoughts as an independent artist. In order to support the mentree’s work and study, Pinerolo has abundant resources for research. Its collection of picture books and related books is more than a public library and no less than the curriculum resources in Fisher library in University of Sydney. 
I enjoyed a misty morning almost every day. 
The facilities in Pinerolo are well equipped for stay and study, particularly, the unlimited access to internet. Mrs and Mr Hamilton are the witnesses and the part of Australian and international publishing industry history. They well answered my questions. I could create the images in beautiful Blue Mountains. They celebrated my outcome.  
Margaret, Max and me. In front of the permanent exhibition of established illustrators. 
Photo courtesy credit on Margaret Hamilton AM. 
Image may contain: people sitting, table and indoor
WestWords and Walker Books were so happy with my outcome and showed a great interest in my ongoing future projects. Because of a quiet nature and well-organised research resources, I could concentrate on the projects. I enjoyed the discussion with Margaret about my future projects, too. I deeply appreciate many people's support to carry out this mentorship project and I have developed my skills in a career.  
My case in Pinerolo will build a strong pathway and legacy for other emerging illustrators. It has proven that our publishing industry delightedly embraces anyone with the potential and nurtures them. Pinerolo residency will become a good role model for other mentorship programs in Australia. It will bring hope and dream for us : artists, their family and public people.
Now, WestWords and I are editing the images to make a book for kids. 
Friends, visit Pinerolo or try a mentorship program.  
Happy Painting!  
The world heritage, Govetts Leap is, too, very near to Pinerolo. 






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Friday, November 3, 2017

Learned a lot from Lisa Stewart's Picture Books workshop

Lisa Stewart and Margaret Hamilton's Picture Books workshop was great. studied collage and enjoyed established illustrators’s working processes. Lisa is, originally from "sculpture" in art. She weighs on the importance of 3D understanding of characters. (*Wow, I wrote it before!) The wishes to draw animals motivated Lisa to be a picture book illustrator, which has turned out a great success. Let's see her working process and tips together. I've bumped good painters converted from sculptors, btw. 
Participant 
Lisa presented her methods, "collage and drawing" and courteously and generously answered questions. It was very interesting to know how another illustrator responded to a text and organise visual images. Getting an idea is possible from anything, if we have a good antenna! She got the idea of a character owl from a chat! Her small sketch book fascinated me and inspired me. It's Lisa's small dummy and a play ground to develop ideas/characters. In sketches, she explores medium, too. When roughly ideas come together, she traces the black and white to real big watercolour papers. "Simplify subjects," Lisa advised us. Then, she layers papers with a variety of textures and colours. Another fun was to know an illustrator's little tips for effective work to meet a deadline! Wise Lisa well uses a planner to check a progress of illustration.
Lisa suggested the importance of space in composition and the continuity of a style though pages. Lisa's dummy already leaves an enough and essential white space. Her sense of designing or the balance of weight in an image was wonderful, I felt. When I asked Lisa when was the most difficult stage in a working process, Lisa said, "Just before colour." Yes, it's not easy. But her colours are so sweet and beautiful!  
Margaret, too, demonstrated each successful illustrator’s procedure with original art work. She often showed the drawing from Stephen Michael King and the "collage" technique from Patricia Mullins. Michael creates real size black and white roughs. Patricia is very famous and successful! Her collage work has very beautiful colours and a sophisticated composition. So, it was great to see the original in my own eyes. Margaret, indeed, published her many picture books by Hamilton Books. 
Tada~~! Lisa, multi-talented artist, played her violin for us! Wow!! 

The great bonus was the feedback on each participant's work. We showed our work on progress. Margaret and Lisa gave the candid, kind and useful critiques. Each of us learned a lot from the comments and other people's work. In addition, Margaret emphasised the uniqueness of each illustrator's working methods with respect, "Some illustrators try dummies and some do not." I make a dummy book and check an information flow. 
I sincerely appreciate Margaret and Lisa's generous help in the high quality workshop. I've deepened the knowledge of illustration processes and gained the insights of picture book illustration with other lovely participants.  

Did you enjoy the workshop with me above? You can come along to Margaret Hamilton's workshops! It's very helpful and practical. That workshop was the part of my education in the children picture book cottage, Pinerolo. In a next post, I'll chat over my residency, the mentorship of Maragret in Pinerolo. 
Btw, I'm working on the picture book of primary school children's writings to be published by WestWords this Nov. So, we're in a rush, rush, rush~~! But it's a great honour and fun. The publication is a reward and present for the children. See you soon. 
Friends, Happy Painting!    









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