Nihonga :  Traditional Japanese Painting

This is the technique I fell in love with when I discovered it during my initial 3 month exchange in Japan… I returned there as soon as I could to further study this technique which I find so beautiful.

In Nihonga, you work with the elements of nature. The colours are made from semi-precious minerals such as malachite, lapis lazuli, azurite… as well as earth, plant pigments. They are mixed separately with water and ‘nikawa’ (hide glue). Applied onto beautiful Japanese washi paper made from the fibres of Kozo (mulberry)… sometimes painted onto silk and often onto gold, silver or other metallic leaf. The beautiful and brightest of whites, ‘gofun’ is produced from the oyster shell ‘itabogaki’.