Season’s Greetings ❄️

Hope you are keeping well and wishing you a peaceful and relaxing Christmas and New Year holiday ☃️


Season's Greetings Blair Thomson 2021

I’ve been fortunate to practice different styles of Shodo calligraphy, jazzy abstract pieces and mysterious photography in 2021. I’ve been especially busy with community creative groups in Glasgow and online on Zoom.


With palms together and kind wishes for 2022, Year of the Tiger 🐯


Remembering the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake

It is now ten years since the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011. We wish to send our warm wishes to all those still very much affected in the Tohoku area and in other parts of Japan – our hearts and thoughts are with you. May you be happy and may you be well.

This sketch is a soft inky piece I made while travelling in Japan (using sumi ink and fude brush and pens), I was enjoying the presence and curves of the Sanjunoto three level Buddhist towers.

透明観 tōmeikan – photography project

透 – tō – to be transparent, leave gap, hold light
明 – mei – bright/ illumination
観 – kan observation meditation; perceive

transparent and moving, perceiving interpenetrating and making space, like the bird shape of Kannon 観音 soaring, seeing and feeling

My series of abstracted photographs has been expanding in the last couple of years and I have been rethinking their scope, and combining with the meditative activities I do. 透明観 – toumeikan – is my new title for the project.

These are three recent photographs taken at Traprain.

Breathing spaces and balance – Japanese & Chinese seal engraving

It was great to have the time to work on 篆刻 tenkoku seal engraving for hansetsu sized calligraphy paper. These hakubun and shubun white and red letter 印 stamps have a face of 2cm square.

After designing the two stamps with a combination of my surname, calligraphy and zen name, and painting on the kanji (in the tensho style) onto the stones which takes care and a steady hand at times, I then spent a while into the deep dark night enjoying the carving.

Twisting branches, fading spaces – sumi-e ink painting

I worked outside in the North of Glasgow with my friend artist Margaret Kerr, painting in my large sketchbook a 水墨画 suibokuga ink painting (style is also called sumi-e) of silver birch trees.

It was comfy kneeling on my picnic mat with my suzuri inkwell and bowls and fude brushes all laid out, and very peaceful with Margaret and the chirping small birds 😊 and great to experiment with some of the suibokuga techniques which use very different methods of using brushes such as holding the fude brushes, adding sumi ink in certain ways, and the numerous types of strokes.

Deciding where to stamp the ink painting of the trees fading into the forest 🌳 was fun, being careful though not to cut off the flow of movement in the artwork though✨