1st “Japanese Handwork” workshop series, Japanese Wood Cut Print!

Today, on 20th June (sat), JCE had our 1st workshop from our workshop series “Japanese Handwork”.  JCE focuses introducing the joy of working with hands, we think the base of Japanese traditional art and crafts are handwork. We had Japanese wood cut print workshop by the workshop leader, Ms. Yumemi Kobayashi. We’ve started morning group from 9:00, and the afternoon group from 13:00. There were 18 participants!

We’ve started the program from Yumemi’s short presentation about Ukiyo-e and wood cut print. She told us about the history and the back ground, the details of Ukiyo-e, and influences to European art. JCE didn’t know that VOC brought Japanese wood cut print as the rapping paper of ceramics, and then, it became popular. The end of Edo era, there was big exposition of Japan in Paris, and Japanese art started to be called as “Japonism” since then, giving influences to Van Gogh and other famous painters. She also explained about the technique and tools.


After the presentation, creation has started! We tried to make the printings with 2 colors. Everybody made a drawing and brought it , Yumemi checked and gave them advice. Traced the drawing on wood by pencil with tracing paper, and carving!  All the participants were concentrated so well by carving, the room became so quiet, JCE thought that this is the fun moment of handwork. Everybody were so into it, just quietly moving hands and creating art.

woodcutprintWS_AM4morning workshopwoodcutprintWS_PM7afternoon workshop

Everybody made carving on the wood for both sides for 2 colors print, and we moved on to printing! Today, we used the water color (gouache) .

When everybody started working with colors, then the atmosphere in the space was changed dramatically. The space looked like ZEN, when they were carving. And with working with colors, it looks like we’re back to the real world, everybody started expressing their taste. They all tried very creative, painting the frames around the print, or trying to use different colors, or carving a bit more… It was surprise, we couldn’t imagine that everybody’s prints appeared so beautiful, when they were carving.


There were variety of designs!




The afternoon group was interesting mixture of nationalities, we had people from Venezuela, Greece, Japan, China, and the Netherlands. That’s great thing about Amsterdam, it’s great opportunity to work together with our Japanese traditional culture with people from many different countries! Yumemi and JCE had a great day too!

Thank you for all the participants and Yumemi for great work!

Our next workshop will be Japanese paper making on 11th July (sat), and we’ll organize “Kintsugi workshop” in August!

Workshop in the morning

Workshop in the afternoon