Looking for a Japanese watercolor painting or print
April 23, 2014 2:21 PM   Subscribe

Years ago, my husband and I bought a cool print of a Japanese watercolor painting in San Francisco. It was a rad painting of fish (koi?) and it was on a scroll-type thing and it wasn't super expensive so I was psyched. So psyched that I left it in the hotel room and have been kicking myself over it ever since. Help me find something comparable so I don't have to kick myself anymore.

Here are some examples of what I am looking for. It rolled up like a scroll and I'd like something similar but that's not required. Similarly, it doesn't have to be a painting - a print would suffice.

Can anyone recommend an artist or store where I could find something like that? I'd like to spend <$100 but I'm flexible. I've looked on Etsy but I would like to hear a personal recommendation. And it if was someone who does nice work, I might be interested in buying more than one piece.
posted by kat518 to Shopping (5 answers total)
I don't have a personal recommendation, but this is a super common, very classic style of Asian brushpainting. Do you mind sharing your location? Most major urban areas in the US have a Chinatown, and basically every Chinatown has at least one gift store that will stock paintings of koi. If you live in an area with enough Chinese people to have a Chinese grocery store, I bet you can even find a local artist who would make this for you. Try checking yelp for Chinese brush-painting classes to find the right person. I once took such a class, and koi is basically lesson number 2 -- much harder than it looks, but a fundamental part of this style of art.
posted by tinymegalo at 2:52 PM on April 23, 2014

Agreed that this is a very common theme in Japanese art. One style of brush painting is "sumi e" - someone who teaches this style will be able to point you in the right direction. I will recommend http://juliekeatenreed.com/

(Not affiliated with her in any way, just like her stuff)
posted by Farce_First at 3:48 PM on April 23, 2014

At the MeFiMall: ''woodblock100: has a special 'Gift Print' page up at this time every year, with a new one in his series of small-scale handmade woodblock prints."

I've always admired the stuff he sells---you might especially like the carp from the gift prints.
posted by leahwrenn at 4:37 PM on April 23, 2014

The roll the painting was on may have been shoji-paper or sumi-e rolls, so you may want to look for that.
posted by SLC Mom at 7:02 PM on April 23, 2014

I have purchased from woodblock101 (bought a Christmas gift for my parents) and came in to recommend him; his work is lovely and very detailed.

He really knows his stuff, too. I think that if he couldn't make something for you that fits your requirements, chances are he would be a good source of information anyway about where you could find what you are looking for.
posted by misha at 8:32 PM on April 23, 2014

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