Saturday, May 22, 2010

Zokei Bonsai

On my previous post for the Seattle Cherry Blossom Festival 2010, I mentioned that I learned to make Zokei Bonsai - bonsai trees made of silk, wire, and rice paper. I wanted to share some of those bonsai I've made:

This is the first one I made, a plum tree. Since this was made in the "beginner's course" of the Zokei Bonsai class, the flowers and buds are store-bought. The focus was learning to create an attractive tree trunk and branches. Near the base is a piece of drift wood that was incorporated into the trunk.

This is the second one I made, an Iris. The focus was learning silk flower making, so this is an "Ikebana" type arrangement. The flowers are layered sheer Japanese silk, and the petal textures were created by wringing the silk between gauze rags in a particular way.

This is an azalea. The flowers and leaves are all silk, and their textures were created using a special type of stick-shaped iron that looks like a soldering gun.

A small arrangement of African violets. The leaves are silk and formed the same way are the iris petals, the violets are satin and were formed with the stick-like iron with a rounded tip to form the cup-shaped petals.

A bonsai I made for New Years: Shochikubai. Shochikubai is a combination used to decorate during the New Year as a symbol of happiness, using pine, bamboo, and plum. The arrangement is accented by a dry riverbed of white pebbles. The pine tree is elevated on a cool rock, and the pine tree's roots are snaking down the rock.

These are some camellia I made that were left over from a camellia tree I did. Unfortunately that tree is still in my instructor's possession, so I do not have pictures of it.

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