Category Archives: japan

QRt – QR Codes can be beautiful!

Have you ever heard of QR codes? you may have seen them on posters, flyers or business cards. Since a while i keep on following how designers use the creative opportunities you get with error correction code written into the QR Code encoder that allows up to 30% deterioration of a QR Code while remaining readable. Basically it means, you can scratch off and redesign a bit of code here and there and it will still scan correctly thanks to the error correction technology used for QR codes.

Here are some of my favourites…

The best examples i have seen to date are how japanese designers implement QR codes into advertisement designs:

and my favourites are the QR designs by SET from Tokyo who totally raised the bar in what is actually possible designing beautiful and clever designs which are still readible by a simple phone app. an inspirational country as always… 😉

and contrary to the standard quick copy&paste job banning the QR code into some corner where it is just sitting and looks boring…some other ads for well known brands are cleverly weaving QR Codes a bit more subtly into their layout as can be seen here and here.

finally, a gallery of some more examples i found on the interwebs during a google picture search, (copyrights of course belong to its respective owners and designers) enjoy!

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South Germany, November 2011

Some time has passed and i’m still in Germany. What happened?
Since i came back in September to my home country, taking a coach from victoria station carrying only the stuff i had left off all my accumulated personal belongings and started living with my family for a while… time passed quickly and a month was gone soon.

Hanging out at shackspace – the local hackspace where i started teaching graffiti skills to some members and set up an urban art workshop and at the temporary artist residency in my brother’s office nearby i found the perfect little base for planning the next steps.

As travelling needs a budget to keep on moving i started my new events business called YUMEii Events (little pun in japanese: yume=dream / ii=good / yumei=famous) and registered with some german agencies and started working in some jobs… as a stage hand helping to set up light and sound at events like a turkish anniversary party, booths at stuttgart messe fair, a test booth for porsche’s next car show, marlboro merchandise booths in stuttgart’s nightclubs etc.

So, i became something like a roadie now. 😛

Recently i posted a link to a documentary about a the japanese freeter community done by ARTE. I watched it with my brother and we both feel like freeters here in germany.
Just working a bit whenever a job comes in, living a carefree life and dreaming of the next place to visit and doing the same there again. Karōshi (過労死) ? No thank you.


It’s two weeks now since i left London… time goes by so quickly…
I spent some days with my family recharging my batteries and had lots of conversations about my life in the uk and are dealing now with the situation to be back to my home country again.

Last saturday i did a last minute job as a stage hand at an event of the turkish community in stuttgart who celebrated the 50th anniversary since turkish guest-workers and their families came to live and work in germany. i helped to move sound and light equipment into the building, set up the stage for 3 traditional turkish bands and moved it all out again (until 3am in the next morning.) The line-up and music was rather exotic and not the tracklist i would play or dance to – but it was interesting to hear them perform live.
why not stay open minded… it was a new experience and almost like a day in turkey. 😉

Yesterday i decided to register officially with a new address in Stuttgart and start soon to run a small business organising and helping out at events in germany and making webdesign, flyers etc. to raise some money for the next journeys.

And apart from that i’ll keep on doing my art and music on the side and really need to brush up some skills in FL10, HTML5, CSS3 and Kanji. keep on reminding me and ask for some updates… 😛 i’ll keep on posting here and on twitter.

My next stops are:
Vienna  – planned for November 2011
Berlin – definitely in 2011

Tokyo – End of Dec 2011/Jan 2012
meeting lots of friends and hopefully the tokyo hackspace and peaceboat to help out with some volunteering in tohoku

Taiwan – 2012
Turkey – ?

Schorndorf (Germany)

i missed so much sitting in mom’s garden for breakfast… 🙂
long talk about life and her biggest passion – shabby chic.
here are some examples…

later my brother friedrich played us some new pieces he wrote on the piano and we came up with ideas for the next exhibitions.

a house full of creatives – welcome back to my family…

ms puxon uniqlo utgp2012 t-shirt contest

skyping with ms. puxon (japan)  in the evening chatting about her entry for the utgp 2012 uniqlo coke shirts competition. vote for her design if you like it! 😉

now reviewing my rusty kanji knowledge with kanji koohii:

After you have chosen your 10 fields of study, measure how good you are at each to find out your specialty.

Day 54 – 3/7/11 – Amsterdam (NL)

last day in amsterdam.
flipping through the book street knowledge. more about art in a seperate post.
meeting later with my good friend jon from london who has been travelling with me a couple of times in the past. we try to keep up the game of meeting in other cities, like berlin and now amsterdam. hopefully it will be tokyo one day…

after some daytripping we went to cafe belgique for some belgian beer. apparently the london police painted there as well and designed a logo for them. and they have something called the wall – a place to come and see if you like street art.

now leaving to stay a night at zeeburg camping site with jon.

catching a train to hoek van holland, then a ferry to uk and a train to london. more about that tomorrow…

street art, graff and japan… some inspiration pt. I

i keep on researching about other artist’s artwork inspired by japanese culture – and new artists from japan. here are a few i found quite interesting.

when flipping through the book street knowledge compiled by king adz:

… a quite interesting book, i liked the work featured on the book cover by uk artist hush

like myself, he is into geishas, kanji, graff, tags, streetart, stencils – the whole lot of all the good things a man must like. for me it’s always interesting to see what other artists are coming up with if they are into the same things. good stuff, mr. hush!

browsing a bit more and also found very good work by another artist called copyright .

he did a collab show together with hush in the brick lane gallery and also seems to be into tattooed asian girls and graff like me… quite easy to like both of them! 😉

last but not least a quick update on the busiest graffiti artist from vienna, mr. nychos.

apparently he painted at the graffiti for japan show in bagnolet. respect!

photos: (c) by gabriel-b


browsing a bit further i also found the japanese illustrator yumiko kayukawa.
different style but also quite inspiring!


also worth mentioning: lady aiko – one of the founding members of faile .

i’ll keep on posting about about this particular topic – as it is one of my favourite.
more to be updated soon…

Day 49 – 28/6/11 – Hamburg (D)


by chance, (or not?) i found a shop for shodo and japanese art nearby called ars japonica.
have a visit if you happen to be in hamburg…
i had a nice chat with the owner, mizuki wildenhahn, who told me she used to study chinese literature and poems even before the ww2 – giving away a bit her age… apparently, her shop was founded in st.pauli in the same year i was born, 34 years ago…

soon i tested some brushes, and luckily found some which are not made of animal hair.
i’m so happy now that i finally found some…i have been looking for them for ages because i’m trying to live the vegan lifestyle and are trying to buy no animal products of any kind – even no animal hair brushes.

eventually, i just bought 2 of them + a bottle of chinese ink (bokuju).
and the money i spent went straight to their donation tin for japan. 🙂

when i told her about my travels she said “…like basho?” maybe… like him, i just should start learning how to write haiku. now that i have 2 nice brushes and some ink in my pocket… 😉

now chilling with some drinks at cafe may nearby again doing my internet stuff.

last day to explore hamburg with my brother…