Monday, December 19, 2011

Moleskine Japanese Album- The story of Four Seasons- Winter Again- The End

I'm going to fly back home tomorrow. Before that, I finished the last pictures of my Moleskine Japanese Album- The Story of Four Seasons.
One year ago, I first saw a Japanese Album of Moleskine at a bookstore and wanted to make a picture story with it. It took me a little time, since I didn't want to finish the story of four seasons within a week, but waited for the change of seasons, enjoyed it and at last, tried to keep some memories back.
It was really fun, that I, for the first time, drew a sketchbook fully and pictures relate to each other. :)

Christmas is coming. A hand-made scarf can be a great present. I crocheted a very long scarf as a present to one friend of mine two years ago. What a hard work it was!

It's now time to exchange presents. Let's see what his present is.

Winter isn't boring anymore. Let's make hot chocolate and wait for the first snow of this year together!

Thank you! End. 
Part 1- Winter- Part 2- Spring- Part 3- Summer- Part 4- Autumn

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

How to survive boring lessons

It rained cats and dogs in the morning. Looking out the window just upset me and the lesson in the classroom was not better. 
Doodling seems to be the most-loved way to survive boring lessons to students around the world. :)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Snail, Rain and Ajisai

It rained all night long yesterday. I'm very sure of that, since I stayed awake all night long to finish this drawing, done by watercolor and colored pencils.
Since I've lived in Germany, I miss heavy rainy days back then in Vietnam. There are only two seasons in my hometown, dry and monsoon seasons. From May to November it rains all day long and it rains everyday. As teenage I disliked this beastly weather. Funnily enough, common things became things I miss most of all, when they're gone.
Although it never really rains in Germany, I've always had an umbrella by my side. Just in case!
Just in case it rains cats and dogs, I won't get soaked and will be able to enjoy this beastly weather. My wild excitement about rainy days made me believe, if reincarnation were real, I could be a snail longing for rain in my last life. Maybe... :)

(Ajisai is the Japanese name of Hortensia. It sounds beautiful, as beautiful as the flower itself.)
Other works of mine related to snails:

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Dahlias in winter

I like to have flowers in my room. They cheer up grey winter days. Dahlia is one of my favorites. The complex arrangement of its petals fascinates me.
I purchased two dahlia, one rosa and one white, two weeks ago. They are now fading little by little, but beautifully.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Penguin's dream of flying

It seems that to be able to fly is an eternal dream of us. 
We envy birds for the way they conquer the sky and how beautifully they float in the air.
However, some birds never have chance to enjoy the spectacular view high up. 
This is a dream of an Emperor Penguin who wants to see and conquer the world. (He's an Emperor after all). :)

Friday, November 25, 2011

The magic hat

One day, Boy A found a magic hat. Where did the hat come from? No one knows. 
(Although I am the creator of this drawing, I don't know either. The only thing I know is that, the hat will change Boy A's life forever.) ^^
Inspired by the wizard's hat from Tove Jansson's Moomin books

Monday, November 21, 2011

Bottle postcards (3)

Let's see, what Grandma has in her garden: Strawberries, snow peas, daisies, yellow pansies and lavender. :)
The strawberries look yummy. Such a shame, because of an allergy, I cannot enjoy their tasty flavor.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Bottle postcards (2)

If we could put one's memories into bottles and lay them on a shelf, I wonder, how many bottles we would need? 
As child I used to live with my grandparents at the seaside. To me, memories of the sea are memories of the childhood at the same time. As teenager I was asked, if I were a thing, what I would like to be. I remember to have answered, that I'd like to be a lighthouse. :)
However, today's theme for the bottles of memories is Love. Van Gogh's painting "Starry Night" and a heart carved in a tree as symbol of puppy love were my inspiration.
Actually, I didn't have either memories of  a romantic starry night or a heart carved in a tree. How about you?

Bottle postcards (1)

Don't throw away empty bottles.
Let's fill them with a lot of beautiful memories that you're afraid you will forget.
These two belong to a set of postcards about my favorite motive: treasures in a glass bottle.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Speedpost Service

A brand-new speed post service offer for lovers of culture of writing and vintage style or eco-warriors...
Be bored with Airmail etiquettes and troubled by greenhouse effect?
Let's GO GREEN by the use of our new Snail Mail stickers! 
(Caution: This is just a work of fiction.)
I wonder whether Mr. Postman could feel offended due to delivering this postcard. :P

Front side:
 Back side:

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Sleeping She-Snail

Back from a busy day, she's now sleeping peacefully in her very cozy shell. Sweet dreams!

Front side:
 Back side:

Monday, October 24, 2011

Moleskine Japanese Album- The story of Four Seasons- Autumn

Autumn is the time of the year for harvesting and spooking people in the neighborhood.
I've never had enough of tasty pumpkin cream soup and decided to dress me up in a witch costum on Halloween. "Meow!!!" Oop! My spoiled cat wants to join in this year. How about you?

The goddess of Autumn brought here rain, wind and made tree leaves change their colors.
It's now time to put on my favorite trench coat and admire charming falling leaves in the air.

What do you prefer doing: collect chestnuts or go mushrooming?
Ouch! Some nasty squirrels don't want to share mushrooms in "their" forest with me.

More of this series:

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Momiji (Red leaves)

Tree leaves are now changing color. Winter is near.
A paper cut greeting card with warm colors as a welcome to the new season has just been done today.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Mum like charming paper cutting greeting cards from Japan. Since I myself made paper cutting, she asked, if I could make some greeting cards of this kind. 
Ajisai is the Japanese word for Hortensia- Mum's favorite flower. Do you see the small yellow snail on the leaf? It's me, Silent Snail. :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Du bist mein, ich bin dein

 Have you ever heard of Minnesang-the tradition of lyric and love song writing in Germany in 12th-14th century?
This Minnelied (love song) of unknown authorship is found in a codex of the 12th century in Germany.
Why don't turn your favorite love poem into a paper cutting work? :)

Du bist mein, ich bin dein,/ dessen sollst du gewiss sein./ Du bist verschlossen/ in meinem Herzen,/ Verloren ist das Schlüsselein-/ du musst immer darin sein.
English translation:
You are mine, I am yours/ Of that you may be sure/ Deep within my heart/ You're safely locked away/ But I have lost the key/ And there you'll ever stay.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sleeps with butterflies

I thought of Tori Amos' song "Sleeps with butterflies" and how much I loved it six years ago while making this paper cutting.
This is my second try at paper cutting. I chose three of my favorite butterlies: the Common Green Birdwing (Ornithoptera priamus); the Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) and the Common Yellow Swallowtail (Papilio machaon). The fourth butterfly is supposed to be a Glasswing butterfly. The magnet butterfly placed beside the paper cutting is an imitation of a Rice Paper butterfly (Idea leuconoe).
Monarch butterflies may not be the butterflies I love most. However, the story of their very long journey (about 4000 km) from the USA to Mexico every year has always bewitched me.
Have you ever heard of this annual migration ? What a fascinating picture in which there are hundred thousand Monarchs floating in the air!

Monday, October 3, 2011

à la chalkboard art

Chalkboard artworks have always cheered me up.
I created this drawing on paper in this style. The black background and white strokes gave it a gentle touch of old school days and country cuisine restaurants.
Besides, this is another drawing, related to tea as proof for my addiction to this hot beverage; and at the same time, it uncovered the truth, that I'm also a foreign languages junkie. ^^

Others posts about tea:

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Free Bird

I purchased a book introducing the art of paper cutting designs. The pictures collected in the book look so fancy, that they made me want to create my own patterns of paper cutting. I had started to make this small design before I went to go to the concert of the French singer and harper Cécile Corbel. I learned of her name from the animated film Arrietty- a masterpiece of Studio Ghibli. The film's soundtracks were written by her. I strongly believe, that her music took part in the international success of the film.
I named my very first paper cutting work "Free Bird" by having got my inspiration from the opening theme song of the anime series called Haibane Renmei (灰羽連盟 lit. Charcoal Feather Federation).

Monday, September 26, 2011

For a love of nature- Atlantic Puffin

I love Atlantic Puffins, which are also called Sea Parrots. Their colorful, but sad-looking faces are lovely and somehow very touching to me. Even though their beaks are full with sand eels freshly caught from the sea, they don't look happier.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hand-made with love

I found a book with instructions how to make Japanese tsumami kanzashi. Four days ago I started to make my first folded cloth flower and wasn't able to stop. These are the result. :)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

La dame de thé- The tea lady

I call this drawing a touch of romance and a sigh for the lost beautiful old days. 
When I talk about tea, I mention neither herbal tea nor fruit tea. To me, the word "tea" means the hot aromatic beverage prepared from the leaves or leaf buds of the Camellia sinensis plants. Through different techniques with which it is produced and processed, tea is classified into white tea, yellow tea, green tea, oolong, black tea and post-fermented tea.
I got my inspiration from the antique botanical lithography illustration of the tea plant from the German medicinal guide "Köhler's Medizinal-Pflanzen", one of the most well-known handbooks of medical plants in the 19th century.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Come to me, my Prince!

I love to listen to tales of mermaids and prefer the variants in which these good-looking mythological aquatic creatures are noted as unlucky omens or coldhearted sea monsters. To me, a mermaid is supposed to look more like a strange fish than a human being. That's why I added to the sea woman in my drawing a huge dorsal fin and gills on her cheeks.
While stroking her sea turtle, she looked at you. "Come to me, my prince! I'll eat you up both skin and bone. Softly."

Friday, August 26, 2011

Sunflower wedding

On the way from Parndorf back to Vienna, I saw endless sunflower fields on the both sides of the street. It reminded me of a documentary film broadcast by NHK about wedding customs in Japan. In the film, there is a couple of young Japanese who love sunflowers deeply and decided to celebrate their special day in a field of sunflowers. What a dreamy start to married life!
I made the raw sketch in Vienna and added colors to it, after I came back to Germany.
This drawing will be a present to two friends of mine who are getting married in the next month. Although they won't celebrate in a field of sunflowers, I wish their married life will be as bright and lovely as these flowers.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

No-School Island

After many rainy days, summer came back. It was crazily hot. The hot weather made me mad and want to create some mad things like this drawing of a floating no-school island.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Alice and the smoking Caterpillar

On 3rd August, I visited a Vietnamese family having lived in Vienna, Austria for years. When the people there were chatting and making dinner, I-who are bad at small talk and not really fond of preparing a meal for a big family- asked for paper and pens to make some doodles of the mushroom garden decors. While drawing these ceramic things, I remembered the smoking Caterpillar in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
I finished the raw sketch in Vienna and started to color it, after I went back home in Germany. Ink and colored pencils were used to create this drawing.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

First Love-Last Love- The 2.Part

Link to the 1. part:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Moomintroll, I love U!

I was very happy in Moomintroll's land. It's fun learning a bit Finnish to flirt around. :P
Thao: "Sinulla on kauniit siniset silmät!" (What beautiful blue eyes you have!)
Moomin: "Kiitos!" (Thank you!)
Snork Maiden (Moomin's girlfriend): Hmmm...

For info about the Moomins:

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


This is the picture I drew for the daughter of the family I lived with in Finland. This fourteen-year-old cute girl loves pink and purple. Paljon kiitoksia! It was very nice staying with you and your parents :)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Let them eat cake

This is my last post of this July, before I go on a Finland vacation.

"Let them eat cake", translated from French for the phrase "Qu'ils mangent de la brioche", is thought to be said by Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, when she learned that the peasants had no bread. However, we are not sure, if it's for real.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Thousand paper cranes

I made this small drawing last year. At that time I wanted to fold one thousand paper cranes.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Yesterday I saw a photo of goldfish taken by ©AKI on Flickr. 
That reminded me of having drawn a picture of fish coming together to snap at the bait.

 The photo from ©AKI's photostream

And this is my drawing.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Planting a good thought


Directions for planting a good thought:
You will need seeds labelled "Good Thoughts", some clean water, fertilizer, anti-bug spray and a glass bell jar (optional). You are supposed to read some books or talk to your "Good Thought" sprout. Conversations bring joy and make your sprout healthy.
Good luck!

Monday, July 11, 2011

A nostalgic moment

I started with a butterfly and ended up drawing coneflowers. I don't know why I'm so fascinated by these flowers, especially when they are fading. Such sad scene always makes me feel nostalgic.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

"Long for Australia" doodles

I'm not keen on listening to presentations conducted by students. Most of them are not arranged well. Besides, because German is not my mother tongue, I need a bit of time to get used to a new voice to understand the information it conveys. A presentation without handout or Power Point slides is really a nightmare to me. Unfortunately, most of presentations in this semester have been conducted this way. When I absolutely lose the thread of what the speaker is saying, I every so often make a doodle. This time I remembered the postcard sent by Mum from Australia, which shows pictures of some typical animals in this country.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Moleskine Japanese Album- The story of Four Seasons- Summer

Summer is my favorite season. I've always longed for it. Since I've lived in Germany, summer didn't mean monsoon, sea and sand anymore. However, I found other new ways to enjoy this time of the year. Summer is now the time for hiking, going for walks, having a picnic, visiting garden festivals and barbecuing in the back yard with friends. 
Actually, I wanted to tell another story of summer. Unfortunately, having believed, that I couldn't forget, I didn't write it down. Now I really have no idea, what went through my brain that time. That's why I have to create another one, which somehow doesn't really go with the pictures.

"Let's go to have a cup of coffee together!", he said. That is how my summertime began. How lovely summer can be!

"Is it love or just something a lot like love?", I wonder. Putting all tiresome thoughts to one side, I took a long walk on a dreamlike meadow covered by yellow coneflowers and dandelions. Solitude has its own charm.

On the next day, my best friend called me:"It's now the best time to have a picnic in the green park." As bright as the sun, she can warm up the coldest day. See? Everyone loves her, even the shyest tiny bug. "A best friend is like a four leaf clover, hard to find and lucky to have."

"Tomorrow will be a sunny day. Let's ride a bicycle to go to the countryside!", we talked simultaneously. Summertime is great, but doesn't last long. Why don't open your heart, feel the heat of the sun on your skin, have fun and enjoy the peaceful beauty of nature together?

2nd Part: Spring
1st Part: Winter