I Am a Cat – Book Cover Design

Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4, 1/100 sec, ISO2000
“I Am a Cat” Cedar Park, 2019

こんにちは。How’s it going?

I’ve decluttered my paper book collection quite a bit, but these three volumes of I Am a Cat by Sōseki Natsume are ones that I want to keep. Not only is the story interesting and funny, but the book cover art is so great. I love it! The book lists the cover art as by H. Doki, but I cannot find any other information about the artist.

I bought these when I lived in Japan (¥1243 sticker still on the back of volume 2) and the printing was from 1995, so I am guessing the artwork can’t be that much older. I think the simple color palette for each volume is perfect. It just makes me smile. 😀

またね~

Movie and Reading Day

"Under the Kotatsu" Cedar Park, 2019
Photo info: motorola moto g(6), 3.95mm, f/1.8, 1/30 sec, ISO253
“Under the Kotatsu” Cedar Park, 2019

Today was a full day of screentime for me, starting off by joining Koa while he rewatched the excellent Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and then I caught the ending of the silly G-Force movie. After that, Koa went over to a friend’s house to hang out and I had the big tv all to myself. I watched The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, which is a story I am familiar with since I am also reading the book. The story is a glimpse into lives so different from mine, and heartbreaking, inspirational, and ultimately uplifting. A really good film, and recommended!

After that, I switched gears and watched Ip Man, which is a 2008 Hong Kong martial arts film starring Donnie Yen. The fighting scenes were pretty great, although there wasn’t much to the plot. It’s based on a true story, though, so that added a bit of weight to the film. I’m not sure if it was enough to motivate me to watch the sequels, but who knows?

To conclude my day of screentime, I finished The Lost Temple of Ssis’sythyss (The Dungeoneers Book 3) by Jeffery Russell. I thoroughly enjoyed the previous two Dungeoneers books and the third book did not disappoint! It actually takes place before the other two which was cool because you get to see how some of the main characters from the first books actually meet.

With the full day of screentime, my 2019 list of books read and movies watched is growing nicely. 😀

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Today’s photo is of our cat, Anko. It’s rare that she goes inside our kotatsu, so when it happened, I had to take a photo and send to my wife. 😆

I hope you had a nice day!

またね~

2019 Movies & Books

Here’s my 2019 list of books I’ve read and movies I’ve watched, with my rating in parentheses (out of 10).

To see other years’ lists, click on the “List Love” menu in the top navigation.

Books

Movies and Dorama

Coffee, Books, and Running

"New Books" Cedar Park, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5.6, 1/50 sec, ISO3200
“New Books” Cedar Park, 2018

こんばんは。How’s it going?

My Sunday was a super-relaxing day, and much welcomed! The highlight was getting a coffee at a friend’s coffee house which I had never been to before. It’s actually Sa-Tén’s second location, and it’s in the old Komé location. So it wasn’t the first time I’ve ever been in the building, just not as a coffee house. Anyways, the drink was yummy as I knew it would be.

After that, I stopped at Kinokuniya and treated myself to a couple of books that I’ve been wanting for a while now. They are both very inspiring and as I am still searching for a style of artwork that I enjoy creating, it’s fun to try new things. And art books are a great way to study techniques and styles. Much better than online, in my opinion.

"Coffee Time" Austin, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5.6, 1/30 sec, ISO3200
“Coffee Time” Austin, 2018

After returning home, I went for a run around the neighborhood which was so stress-free. I mean, I had no time constraints, and I don’t push myself to keep running if I don’t feel like it. I just listen to my body, which mostly means paying attention to any kinds of aches or pains that might arise. But even if I am feeling good, I’ll walk for a while too since it’s a nice way to observe things around the neighborhood.

It’s funny to think about the different levels of interaction with the environment you can have while traveling. In a plane, you are pretty much cut off from the environment. In a train, you can see the land slipping past. In a car, you can go slower, and stop sometimes, but there’s still glass between you and the environment. On a motorcycle, you experience the sights more closely, the air and temperature changes, all the smells, plus the sound of the wind. On a bike, it’s similar but of course much slower so you can look around a lot more. Running is even slower and you concentrate more on your body condition. Then walking it when you are most connected to the environment and can observe things in a very calm time-frame. Like, you can see and hear everything, and when you watch that car going down the street, you know that the driver is insulated from the environment you are in. I know I am just rambling. But these are the types of things that go through my mind when I am running and walking. 🤷‍♂️

I hope you had a nice day, and thanks for sticking with this post until the end!

またね~

Kinokuniya Haul

"Illustration Annual 2018" Cedar Park, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.8, 1/125 sec, ISO1250
“Illustration Annual 2018” Cedar Park, 2018

こんばんは。How’s it going?

Today after work I went to Kinokuniya to browse the stationery and books. It’s actually a great opportunity since I am alone – I don’t have to hurry and can take my own sweet time. 🙂 I was primarily looking for more illustration/art books to find inspiration and get some pointers to improve my own illustration skills and found a great compilation of artists. This Illustration 2018 book is huge – over 300 pages! There are so many great illustrations and each one has a little info about the artist, including their websites, email, or social media links. I went thru about a third of the book already and marked pages using the stickies that I also bought from Kinokuniya. I’ve bookmarked so many pages already!

"Cool Stuff" Cedar Park, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.8, 1/125 sec, ISO1250
“Cool Stuff” Cedar Park, 2018

I think it’s really useful to look at the illustrations in printed format, rather than just onscreen. You can really see the detail and technique a lot better. It’s weird to me because I thought that a digital format would be advantageous because you can zoom in and the colors are more vibrant, but the printed book is way better. Not only is the “zooming and panning” natural (moving your head and eyes closer), but it brings the artwork into the physical world and tangible reality. The only thing better would be to have the full-size print. It’s the reason that galleries and museums still exist. I highly recommend spending your money on art, illustration, or photo books. Skip a couple dinners out, and buy a book!

The bookmark sticker set I bought is pretty neat. I love the designs of these, but this is just one of several different sets, and they are great. I wish I could have all of them, but I’ll just stick to this one, which I liked best. There are 375 total stickers so it’ll last me a while.

"Bookmark Stickers" Cedar Park, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.8, 1/125 sec, ISO1250
“Bookmark Stickers” Cedar Park, 2018

I have a couple of Pilot Hi-tec-C Coleto multi-ink pens, and I’ve run out of ink in a couple of the cartridges. Happily, Kinokuniya has a big selection of refills. Now I just have to decide if I should change up the color combinations of my pens, or just get the same colors… ah what a dilemma! 😝

"Coleto Heaven" Austin, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.8, 1/125 sec, ISO1250
“Coleto Heaven” Austin, 2018

I hope you had a nice day!

またね~