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First I just want to get a rant out of the way.

There was a picture of a tattoo done by Mike Rubendall posted on a tattoo community, and the comment's really annoyed me about how it was badly done, messed up face ect... It was a typical Japanese style tiger that looked great.

Everyone is, of course, entitled to their opinions about their favourite styles but the ignorance of these people got to me a bit :mad:

Tattoo enthusiasts should really know about the influence of Ukiyo-e and Japanese tattoos.

Anyway I thought we could have a thread to share some of our favourite Ukiyo-e pieces.

This was the piece by Rubendall, and a Ukiyo-e tiger.

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People are dumb. Having said that there is something funky about some traditional Japanese tigers I've seen. I read somewhere that it's because there were no tigers in Japan so the images were based on written descriptions in Chinese literature. In fact I just Googled it: Tigers in Japanese Art | Arts & Culture | Smithsonian. Here's the example they use:

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I really like the one on the right. I've been looking through prints to find ideas for a back piece, but I also really love just admiring the artwork. I could look through books of these all day.

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But those Ukiyo prints are completely acceptable (and awesome). I would say the criticism is lent to the most awkward ones, nothing special than the criticism that any weird looking art receives.

For example, Suikoden vs Kabuki; The character portrayal in kabuki is much more cartoonish than the other. That's my opinion. I'm not going to pretend that I really know anything about art, but I just think it's something to consider. Because on the other hand, one could argue that the snake looks goofy. I'm good at destroying my own arguments.

Kuniyoshi_Utagawa%2C_Suikoden_Series_4.jpg

VS

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/26/Sharaku_%281794%29_Sawamura_Yodogor%C5%8D_II_as_Kawatsura_H%C5%8Dgen_and_Band%C5%8D_Zenji_as_Oni_Sadob%C5%8D_%28compressed%29.jpg

Good lord that second picture did not embed properly. I'll have to suffice with hyperlink.

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It's not even the goofiness of the snake that I have the problem with, because I don't think it is goofy*. I get the feeling/idea/intention of the story behind the print without knowing exactly what it is about - that makes it successful on a certain level. What I do not like about it is the slightly funky color registration (each color gets a different block/carving, so it is a lot of blocks - except the blends those are on one block like in the second print with the yellow/gray sleeve) and the sloppy carving of the lines that bothers me - especially in the water. I like to see nice clean printing, colors/registration that don't seem rushed, cleanly carved lines that are clear to read. Others may disagree, and I'm okay with that.

I have to remember that these were cranked out like posters during this time period, and there are different schools/styles within ukiyo-e - so I'm not going to like everything that everyone does because of the style differences. Also, with the influence of the West, the styles changed to accommodate the desires of Western buyers (if I'm remembering correctly.)

@TaeTae - thank you! I love the negative space between the wings and the rest of the landscape, and the simplicity of the colors.

*Edit: that first sentence should say, "I don't think it is all that goofy."

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Print No.3 from the series "Flowers of Japan and Scenery from Japanese Gardens (Nihon Hana Zukushi)", Ogata Gekkō (1859-1920) - 1890s.

[source: ogatagekko.net]

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