A recurring topic in my work seems to be Japan, which has resulted in a series of paintings and multiple posters dedicated to and inspired by different locations from the island nation. These four images were also painted at the same time as four cat themed illustrations that are focused on some more specific Japanese details.

The view of Mount Fuji through the cherry blossoms. A spring themed image, painted in pinks and blues.

Mount Fuji

Media: Digital.

When whenever creating a series of Japanese scenery, I cannot help but add Mount Fuji, as it’s such a recognisable and iconic mountain. In a way that probably makes it a bit clishé to add to a series, however, when it’s a major landmark used in a lot of promotion, it’s kind of a must at the same time.

Back in 2022, during Huely, I painted Lake Kawaguchi with a view of Mount Fuji. That painting, and its poster was set in autumn, so it was fun to create a spring version of the similar landscape.

A black castle with white accents stands tall against the autumn foliage in the foreground.

Okayama castle

Media: Digital.

At present it’s estimated that there’s around 100 castles in Japan, some still standing, others ruins. This castle, Okayama Castle, found in Okayama in Okayama prefecture, is also known as Crow Castle due to its black exterior. The main tower of the castle was finsihed in 1597, though the only original buildings of this castle are the two watch towers, as large parts of Okayama Castle was destroyed in 1945. In 1966 the castle was restored, though and was recreated in concrete rather than wood and stone.

A short staircase lead up to a light stone torii gate that leads into a shrine. There are signs indicating that there's a level crossing before you enter the shrine. Cherry trees are blooming inside the shrine, which stand nicely against the greenery in the background. In the background we also see one of the main shrine.

Goryo shrine

Media: Digital.

We find Goryo Shrine in Kamakura, in Kanagawa Prefecture, located not too far away from Hasedera Temple. The shrine might not be as popular at the temple itself, but it is a known spot to see hydrangeas in early summer. Another thing that makes this shrine special is the street car, “Enoden”, that runs past the entrance, meaning you’re likely to have to cross the level crossing before entering the premisess.

Two rows of lit snow lanterns line a road leading to a torii gate. The image is painted in blues, with accents of yellow, orange and a bright red for the torii gate, creating a perfect winter mood.

Uesugi snow lantern festival

Media: Digital.

Every winter a snow lantern festival is held in Yonezawa, in Yamagata prefecture. The main area of the festival is in Matsugasaki Park, that also encompass Uesugi Shrine. The festival takes place during the second weekend in February, where you can find around 200-300 carved lanterns and 1000 smaller snow lamps dotted around the premises.