So what is Kawaii and why do I LOVE to paint them? Below, is the Oxford definition of Kawaii and the above photo is an example of Kawaii painted characters in real life.
(in the context of Japanese popular culture) cute. "she paints elephants that are extremely kawaii"
the quality of being cute, or items that are cute. "even in a cosmopolitan city like Tokyo, kawaii is everywhere."
I love to paint them because they are just that...cute! But it's more of a playful cute than a lovely, beautiful cute. It brings so much joy to those who see them and I can really get creative and customize them to my clients preferences...and they're just a ton of fun to paint! You can't make a mistake...if you do, turn it into a character!
During my holiday back to the Okanagan, I was commissioned to paint a custom Kawaii mural in a Speech Therapy clinic in their waiting area. I was thrilled (did you know my background is a degree in Linguistics and I was on the path to SLP - speech language pathology? Then...kids!) So I was happy to be able to create this space for her. We actually went to UBC together and kept in touch over the 'Gram!
When planning for a mural like this, I ask my clients what theme they want, or at least are there any key words that would inspire this work? Any symbols or characters you want to add, such as flowers, a surf board, etc? In this case, because it was a kids' space, we decided on farm animals, a car, rainbow and sunshine (which will be in the name!). Farm animals are great for kids as they can point them out and practice articulating the words of familiar images. My client also wanted some empty speech bubbles, which I thought was brilliant, so that it would entice the little ones to use their imagination and think about what the animals and characters would be saying! What a great idea!
Then I sketched up a few drawings on my iPad, we had a couple revisions before setting on a drawing 'plan'. I put that word in '' because it's a guide and art can never be duplicated!
I tried not to add too many ominous characters except for that spider in the barn! Next up, colouring pages for the kids that they can take home. How is this done? It's simple, I'll get a good clear photo of a portion of the wall, then I vectorize it, add my branding and print them out!
Here is a video below of the whole process and a few photos. I hope you enjoy! Check out my Instagram page for more Kawaii murals that I've done, from Sooke to Vancouver, Kelowna and Penticton!
Interested in getting one? Just send me an email to email@example.com