Art mail never really dies.
It started out innocently enough, with a list of people I wanted to
send postcards to from Germany. This is the only picture I have of them, the one with all the souvenir sweets and swag I got. It was all very inexpensive, too, and anyway, Hannes' parents and friends wouldn't let me pay for any-damn-thing, so this right here is pretty much where the small amount of money I was able to bring went.
But cute postcards are unexpectedly hard to find!
Sometimes drug stores have them, but bookstores don't, and neither do airport shops. And most of the ones you see around are kind of shitty-looking, with lots of small images and borders and text all crammed on there.. So I didn't have enough for everyone on my list.
Update: Just kidding! Here's a picture of them.
Hannes' mom mailed them for me (I left her too much money to do it, haha! sneak attack) just after we left, and once back in Japan, I decided to send New Years' cards
to the second half of my friends and family.
I've got loads of 100円 stickers and letter sets, and since this is maybe my
longest-running project ever, I guess it's pretty obvious that I just enjoy
writing letters and sending things.
Actually, some of the letters I sent from Japan were also postcards.
I found a sort-of-generic but quintessential Tokyo one at my little neighbourhood
stationery shop for like 60 cents and was like yas and grabbed a bunch.
As you can kind of see, I added emoji faces to Mt. Fuji and little animals climbing Skytree.
Did I mention that these lovelies from Arizona and Djibouti (where Ivanhoe repairs German military helicopters) were waiting for us when we got back to Tokyo? Stupid adorable caring friends, with their love and questions about our well-being and glad tidings!
Taking up all our fridge door space..
Ahh! I never posted the big pack of stickers Brendan of Displeasing Designs sent when I ordered just a few from his Etsy shop. He saw a pic I posted of one of his toilet men a while back and we chatted a little on Instagram; I hadn't known the dino rider snail was his design, too! Most of them are really, truly displeasing to the point of being absolutely disgusting, but this confused T-rex in a tutu is so cute. There's one in the bathroom at Earthdom.
Anyway, small world, it turns out that Jharrod knows him from one of the times he visited Tokyo, which was probably when he stuck both those slaps in Shin Okubo. Turns out he's an integral central figure of the Melbourne grindcore scene. Thought I might get the chance to meet him too, but alas, it doesn't seem meant to be.
Thanks for all the extra slaps, though!
I also ordered these hand-printed patches by Adrienne Rozzi of Poison Apple Printshop as a Christmas gift for myself, and asked my mom to bring them to Germany. I'd had them bookmarked for a really really long time (maybe as long as three years? this is why student debt needs to stop being a thing), and finally caved when she added this laminarium unguenta back patch, though I don't have any available jacket space to put it on.
It's a reference to the process and materials that witches in the Middle Ages allegedly used to fly: they would supposedly coat themselves in animal fat full of the most powerful and psychoactive "witch's weeds", like mandrake and datura and belladonna.
You can read about it here; one of the reasons I like this artist is that she lives a really interesting, massively gothic life and does shitloads of research in conjunction with her illustrations and printing.
Speaking of magic and herbs and cool creepy shit, look at this amazing clearfile!
It's by Araki Mizuho, and the 神保町いちのいち, or Jimbocho Ichinoichi, store that I love in Tokyo Station carries a lot of her stationery. I had been looking for an excuse to buy more when Ale got hired at her dream job and finally moved to a new place that she actually likes AND got her own car, all at the same time.
She's doing natural (but not homeopathic because that's bullshit of course) healing and teen counseling at this clinic where they just love her to death, and I wanted to congratulate her.
Plus, you know, a file, notepad, eraser, and mini bookplate, you could totally use
those things for work, right?
Chocolate's also gotten a little played out so I included a box of 八橋, or yatsuhashi,
which is probably the first traditional sweet Hannes ever tried too, when we visited Kyoto together while still living in Seoul for a visa run.
Shitty phone picture of the random stickers and a short letter on The Professional postcard I randomly picked up at a shop in Harajuku while hanging out with Rejon one day last summer.
Sorry if you hate this picture Ale lol but you're super excited and it's great!
Also, instead of sending Josh a New Years' letter with my cute little Japanese stationery sets, I decided to dig up all of the green things I could find to make him a little green art mail thingy, because I'd been meaning to send him one for like a year and a half and felt bad.
I used ALL the green things, even my green scissors.
You don't understand: he loves green. I mean like, more than I love blue, more
than you love purple. The guy's a little obsessed.
And he really liked it! It was a total surprise.
Miss you, Josh! See you again this summer!
And I wasn't originally going to, but I ended up sending my mom a little Valentine
goody back in a packet of a few other things that needed to get sent. It was a bit late, but hey, it's the thought that counts. The little hearts are roasted mochi (so, rice crackers), the little pink chocolate disk had a hint of rosemary flavour, and the little box has a packet of sweet red beans coated in chocolate inside.
Finally, I got this kickass packet from Zac and Becca!
Zac went on a trip to Baja California and picked up not one but three postcards for my collection (you are enabling my hoarding, you know that right) and even found this glorious "Fuck Trump" woven bracelet, which I will treasure always haha. He also picked up that calavera magnet because it reminded him of a popular game he's been playing a lot recently. And then Becca did a self-portrait in her Doomsday Valkyries derby gear (that's her on the bottom right) on an envelope. Thanks, guys!