Category Archives: Paint + Collage + Craft

collections of visual art including oil, acrylic and watercolour paintings, travel ephemera collage art and even hand crafted party invites

Nengajyo / New Year’s Card 2022 – Adapters Ahoy!

Sharp peekers maybe caught the preview in “Post’d: New Years “nengajyo” in process” and now fresh from various post office trips with stamping goodtimes comes our best wishes to you for a pleasing 2022 in the form of a card from Tsuchida Cottage featuring us in ‘The Linda Lindas” shirts and swag. Note the details.

You may be shocked that I did not *accidentally on purpose* steal the post box/pen holder but I did use the stamps at the post office to decorate the postcards because, that’s what the stamps are for – specifically featuring the coming year’s zodiac sign, the tiger. Yep, cute tigers coming on your New Year’s cards.

130 out to foreign address and around the same in process to domestic Japan (with different back and includes Japan Post special “raffle” cards) as of this writing Dec. 27 (hurry hurry printers!)

I hope one of them is for you. I’m doing my best.

Fondly from Dave, Ryoko and Ichiro

PS On the back is a poem by me (naturally) with a few sentiments about adapting to situations and using the unexpected to reinvent as well as expressing empathy.

All the Time

Reinvent
Re-create
Replenish, even Rejuvenate or Rejoice

Adapters plant seeds 
and watch the trees tell time, 
over decades

There’s no hurry
We’re here forever
Go slow 
We’ve got all the time for you
Records, flowers and paints
Fresh coffee with a view

If you’ve had a hard year
We’re here with our ears

Pack your steamer trunk and be ready for queen tides, we’ll spark the woodstove

Ramble forth, possibly fret, maybe cry but 
know – even without *believing* – light is here as needed
	Always fondly.

By Dave Olson, Tsuchida, Okayama

Paintings & photos, framed (at last)

Did some framing, some legacy pieces from childhood, some by my Mom & my friend Marty‘s silk screen/block print creations, original Nick Bantock and signed/numbered prints – And 13 of my Gravelly Beach series painted in 2005.

Do you notice how the Gravelly Beach ones are “floated” in the frame? These pieces are painted (in various media) on canvas sheets and then mounted on wooden cradles then on matte board in a deep frame under acrylic/glass.

Going to take a little while to process as well as hang it all but so happy to check this off the list. Long time coming. (In a way i think) I found it hard to make new paintings when all these other paintings are just sitting in folios and boxes / Gotta respect the work.

Here are a couple more (the one on the left and the right, not the center) from my Gravelly Beach series. {These are on stretched canvases and rather large so didn’t put them under glass/acrylic}

Definitely don’t have the wall space for all of it at once, “there’s also a lot of other art already in the collection – but some will hang in the barn and I’m looking for a cafe/gallery that I can do a rotating exhibit at. Importantly though, they are now protected as a lot of those were moved around and getting smashed and deteriorated.

Post’d: Global Postboxes (mostly), Red (usually)

Newest Postcard series for the “daveo postal club” members and other free radicals. Snaps come from Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Australia maybe, other places as well but mostly tall slender red unit except the blue one, and the ones that are red but not post boxes.

such elegance and utility in the designs which somehow feel universal and unique at the same time

Get in on the goodtimes (free/random &/or subscribe/expedited)

completely unrelated, half finished and lost painting (that was changed entirely) in Jamaica which appeared on a robot and posting here so i don’t forget it

Post’d: Japan Post (and magic little motorbikes)

One of very best parts of Japan Life is the stellar Postal Service >> Japan Post always impresses with diligence & flair here at Tsuchida Cottage. {Postal mark emoji goes here}

[It’s so fun as they come here and little red scooters or in cute Tonka looking trucks, or a friendly human with striped trousers and hat in a little red van]

semi-related note to a friend who mailed me something special

“I love my life here but it’s easy to get a little melancholy around the holidays as it’s just really not really much of a thing here, everything builds up till New Year’s but it’s just, all very different. My family and friends and “old life” you’re really far away right now so this brought me right home to riding the Seabus every day.”

Diary: Catch-up with Mochi, Scrapbooks, Postcards, Framing and usual tasks

new postcard series, “Global Postboxes (mostly), Red (usually)” for the postcards club members

Quick hits from last week or so – have a load of things *want* to do before end of the year (as always) but trying to prioritize gracefully and accept the days as they roll in.

What follows are reminders of various unrelated to “big creative projects ™” from last lil stretch, here to remind me (and future me) of all wrangled through during the ups and downs.

Father in law checks the steamers as neighbours pound mochi rice behind

Mochi making day in Tsuchida neighbourhood (at the little community center where their late grandfather Ichiro used to perform with his accordion… We still have the accordion but it needs some repairs). Steam rice, pound rice, each eat with sweet beans.

Took some snaps of the community agricultural processing sorta warehouse i’ll maybe curate eventually.

Besides the usual dishes, laundry, and tea… Finished epic Beat hero video & prepped some rather gorgeous “Postcards from Gravelly Beach” for some kindly (and lucky :-)) supporters/customers.

Of course, I’m really the lucky one. PS You can get in on the fun by ordering postcard sets & art dossiers or sign up for my monthly “postcard as a service” for $5+/mo.

Note: On my list for next year is to think about how to step this project up (or not)… do i stay the course? add WP “coffee” button? add woocommerce? (finally) start etsy store? start shop!fy store? i dunno. want easy, low stress all the money is distributed to various charities and causes {+ paper, ink & stamps} – advice?

2021 correspondence scrapbook, cover

Also did a wee bit of scrapbooking… Specifically properly archiving all of this year’s general correspondence.

Continue reading Diary: Catch-up with Mochi, Scrapbooks, Postcards, Framing and usual tasks

Post’d: New Years “nengajyo” in process

Bought all of the 70¥ stamps the post office had – every single one.

Took off the jacket and scarf and sat for a while putting on inky stamps and postal stamps and dropped first batch into the wormhole.

Each card receives seven+ special touches yet it doesn’t seem like *near enough* to express my appreciation for my friends and correspondents.

In brief: #Spoilers

Front side a photo made by an Insta film camera and decorated with dymo labels, scanned and printed – Each one a little bit different with colour distressing #punkrock.

Reverse features an original freeverse poem with various touchpoints and hallmarks from the year & intentions ahead.

A hand applied “postcard“ signification (black ink), and air mail stamp (blue ink), a tiger stamp to commemorate the year ahead (red ink).

Hand addressed with my own “quasi-calligraphy (midnight blue ink)

Glued on 70 ¥ stamp with classic Japan vibes design.

Mildly obsessive? Yeah, definitely but I want each one to be better and better.

Up’d the total count to around 150 pieces so I hope you get one, I’m trying my hardest, I really really am – Rough couple of days after a few really good weeks, so it goes so it rolls #mecfs

Grateful for Post offices, correspondence, and you.

Tree Measures Time (with patience & art)

so much history right here for me and all of it witnessed by this glorious gingko tree – photo by Ryoko Olson, painting by me

A journey of 30 years starts with a single act quitting a terrible mushroom farmer job and hitchhiking to a cow farm to shakedown gear & head into eveywhere. 

Years later, you meet a remarkable girl, throw a raging party with international renegades, goats are swapped for the cows, the espresso is top shelf and the gingko tree measures the changes.

Postcards available on site (at Rural Caprine Farm, Mac Kobayashi, farmer)

PS in reply to a comment, keeping here for keeping:

Yeah travel gets complicated and strangely enough, amongst all the “public health conundrums” and just been in one place for a long time, I’ve had the most incredible 18 months of my life, I almost just accidentally. But Japan is a wonderful place to visit, it’s easy to get around and such a variety of geography and culture and everything from ultra-modern to old-timey coexisting next to each other.By the way, in my endless folder of “almost finished but not quite” essays to put up on my website is a practical guide to traveling while dealing with chronic/complex illness… A few airport/airplane/travel hacks (for lack of a better word) I’ve used to skate around the world while dealing with #MECFS etc

My world switches rapidly between black and white and Technicolor depending on the hour. Do you have this one in your collection yet? Do you know anytime you see something of mine you’d like, I’ll make you a postcard of it. I’d like to imagine I’m on your refrigerator

Post’d: Passports into Postcards (to keep somebody else *remembered*)

Inky stamps, each with significance, Otherwise, why even stamp?

Though i’m not an Egyptologist officially, I do know that the old-timey Egyptians believed you died a second time when people stopped talking about / remembering you.

As such, i’m keeping the folks (from CCCP, Albania, Yugoslavia, Romania and so on) in these passports alive in a sort of way by making them into postcards and sending them on special missions out into the world

you can find the full freeverse poem “Flood’d” elsewhere in this archive if curious

With relevant snippet of handcrafted poetry on reverse (Flood’d).

Passports, party membership & ration books, now postcards

Are you in the diplomatic club of mysterious goodness? $5/mo gets you handcrafted art & story.

Post’d: stamps, parcels & kind helper

Postage stamps of postboxes, from Japan and France. ¥70 is just right for international postcards.

Meta + Diplomacy.I bought them all including the example ones.

Also some classic Japanese kimono ukiyo-e designs (possibly noticed in earlier dispatch) for the stash at home.

Grateful that the kind lady at the little local (Shinogoze) post office indulges me covering the box with $30 worth of hand-picked stamps ++ added some inky stamps on standby special for New Year’s cards.

In this case, she hand-cancelled and covered the stamps with extra tape as the package was a little bit non-adhesive.

As for shipping packages, due to lack of planes and congested shipping channels, getting stuff to Canada tough. Small packets only, 2kg & 90cm WHD max. No parcels, no surface/sea/SAL :( #denied

The bottom box is repacked into two smaller boxes, the top one is huge slabs of vinyl weighing in at 2.2 kg and can’t be broken out so it will wait for safer passage

Post’d: Trains & Trams (& carriage interiors), mostly in Nagasaki

Fired up the printer last night, with two kinds of paper and 12 or 15 different designs with trains and trams/street cars in & around Nagasaki – plus another “bonus series” of symmetrical views of vanishing point in train interiors.

So many cute trams & trains in Nagasaki, plus some other treats which seemed to want to find a way into the world

Turned out so well! The trick is getting all the crops and the captions on the back just right as well as no/borders and choosing appropriate paper from extensive assortment. In this case, some are on thick watercolor paper, others done on glossy or thinner paper with a little white border which might get a crinkle cut.

Now comes the part where I diligently & specifically choose who gets which one, which stamp (Note: i generally over pay the postage in order to get the better designs on the 84¥ stamps) & which pen to use. Yes I’m very enjoyably overthink all of it.

You can see the same designs on different paper with different borders

I did let my doctor today choose first from the whole stash and enjoyed telling him the back story -– down to the nuanced detail – of the one he chose / indeed this photo has so much backstory to me – From Pender to Newfoundland to Nepal. I’ll tell you sometime if you ask.

Dr chose this one which holds such meaning for me with memories & boots from Pender to Newfoundland to Pokhara to Nagasaki

Made some extras so If you’re feeling a little blue or done something particularly nice out there in the world or, I don’t know, like a birthday or something, sign up for the postal club and I’ll see if I can’t get one coming your way… Always trying to catch up, I’m sort of trying my best 🙂

Of course the smart folks sign up for the “postcard as a service“ for a new unique piece of art every month / Surprise every month &/or blanks to send to pals / totally worth it #Endorsement

daveostory.com/shop/

I assume each of them will be passed down through generations. Fck disposable, make art.

Post’d: Tea & Ink + metaphors of knives & telegrams

The important part is to enjoy tea {and the tools} +

Series of 9

Bound for the post office forthwith (tomorrow is a holiday in Japan hence closed) with a new batch for (some of) the “postcard as a service” subscribers… Each handmade on washi paper with ink sketches of different elements used in tea ceremony with specific narrative on the back.

Yep, 9 indeed

Just think: If all these folks got together one day, each with their card in hand, together they would have a (in)complete guide book to tea ceremony ;)

The tea cards anointed with these most wonderful Japanese remixed woodblock print stamps

[Update] Arrived at my favorite little post office, Shinogoze, with 11 minutes before closing the day before a holiday – they were, as always, excited to see my new creations – rather surprised that I make these things mail all over – and indulge me picking out *just the right* stamps + managed to squeeze up a few quick snapshots before they went into the chute of adventure.

The bonus/sundry assortment where adorned with the cute little Postal bear off on an adventure in England it seems

Bonus round: A few from the standard and experimental stacks also went out for various purposes including:

* train station in Tripunnithura, Kerala India (going back to India) & * post boxes in Kathmandu (foreign, domestic, regional) – in memorium

* telegrams (concerning roast beef, smoking jacket and a barman named Sunday) from the Majestic Hotel in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia / protip: find the poem written from this very experience elsewhere in this archive (snap too #evidence)

On the left is from DT Suzuki Zen Museum in Kanazawa, on the right is from Yumeji museums in Okayama / Both adorned with far more expensive stamp than necessary for the postal rain but seem to really fit the aesthetics. What is a few yen between magicians anyway?

* Two very important health of various kinds of practitioners celebrate birthdays (constantly enough, the same age milestone) and though they’ve been in close navigation to each other, I’ve never met… Anyway, pulled from the high value/not by me file for special wishes & gratitude

* assortment of pocket knives (with metaphor included) and even more metaphor with the importance of Scaffolding in most any construction/project, so often forgotten, no matter how sturdy (on a enotepad from some government office)

Get in on the fun, 2 ways:

Free/Occasional/Random/Fun; https://daveostory.com/more-daveo/postal-club/

Deluxe Postcard subscription & shop: https://daveostory.com/shop/

Post’d: not *these* postcards right now, these are gone, but next are…

Aside: Paralympic stamps are already disappeared from the post office along with all other evidence of the recent Olympics around Japan. It’s not a happy feeling in general despite all the shiny shiny performances

Sharing this August batch so a recent new penpal in India can see some Paralympics stamps from Tokyo2020/1 > love the big stacks! sending vibes out to so many.

September series are thick textured tactile washi paper with ink drawings of tea ceremony items / you can get in on the goodtimes / priceless + putting “fun” into fungible.

Bits of inspiration for September’s postcard as a service assortment