Amelia's Magazine | Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan – an illustrated report by Emma Block

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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan – an illustrated report by Emma Block

Illustration Rally holds their first ever event. Cakes are eaten, beautiful things are made and money is raised for Japan. All illustrations by Emma Block.

Written by Emma Block

emma_block_tea_ceremony
Illustration by Emma Block.

In the wake of the tsunami that hit Japan in March, malady the online community rushed to find a way to help. Illustration Rally, run by Natsuki Otani, began the Ganbare Nippon Appeal, which translates as Don’t Give Up Japan.

emma_block_kimono  Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan
Illustration by Emma Block.

As part of this appeal, Illustration Rally held it’s first ever event, Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan, which I was lucky enough to attend. It was held in the super trendy The Book Club in Shoreditch, and was organised by a host of illustrators. As I walked in, I immediately saw a bunch of lovely ACOFI illustrators that I recognised, and sat down for a chat and green tea cup cake (first of many) with Jenny Robbins and June Sees.

Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan making cake
Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan making cake prints
Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan making
All photography by Emma Block.

Armed with paper, paint and pencils, these two talented ladies were offering live portraits of guests at the party. At the same time some painting was happening on a much larger scale as Mr Millerchip, Kristian Jones, Seb Burnett and Stephen Chan worked on a live drawing across one of the walls.

live drawing
june sees Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan
June Sees with her artwork.

erica_and_natsuki   Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan
Erica Sharp and Natsuki Otani who were running the show looked beautiful in their traditional kimonos, and after a cake or four, I decided to try one on myself.

The process of putting a kimono on is more complicated that I could possibly have imagined. Things were expertly wrapped and tucked and tied and twisted around me for quite some time, in order to create the finished look.

Emma Block_in_a_kimono   Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan
If you were feeling creative there was origami-making with Erica Sharp, and zine-making with Lea Wade. There was also a fantastic raffle – with prizes including some lovely ToDryFor goodies – if you were feeling lucky.

origami Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan

One of the most special parts of the day for me was being involved in a traditional tea ceremony. Milk and two sugars it was not. We knelt as green tea was carefully prepared, and the first person to drink bowed as they received it. They placed the bowl on their hand and turned it two and half times before drinking it in three sips, then turned it back two and half times, and placed it down and bowed again.

emma_block_green_tea_cake Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan
Illustration by Emma Block.

All in all it was a wonderful day, and I hope Illustration Rally have another event soon! You can find out more about the Gabare Nippon Appeal here, and visit the fundraising shop on Etsy. The resulting zine can now be bought online here for a £3 donation – go on, it’s for a great cause.

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3 Responses to “Paint it! Make it! Party for Japan – an illustrated report by Emma Block”

  1. Thank you Amelia and Emma, such a wonderful report!

  2. Amelia says:

    our mutual pleasure x

  3. [...] it until my report for Amelia’s Magazine was up. It is now live on the website here, so do have a look. These are the illustrations I created for the article. My camera’s rubbish so I wanted to do [...]

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