UPDATED FOR GERMANY: I was surprised that I got emails from Germans that they can't watch my Yoka video on YouTube. It blocks Germany country only, it's so weird! I can do nothing with YouTube because it says, " No action is required on your part. Your video is still available everywhere not listed above. In some cases ads may appear next to your video. " YouTube sounds odd.No worries, please watch my Yoka video on Vimeo site. Danke Schoen!
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
In August 2009, my client Brenda from States discovered my art in Gallery Nucleus during Tree House show. She purchased one of my Tree House pieces. Later, she saw my commissioned Owl toy for my client Nick. She wanted a custom toy from me so I added her in my commission list. In March - June 2010 (I was working on other artworks for the shows/commissions), Brenda and I started discussing about her art requests. I really loved the way she communicated with me easily gently. Her art request said, " I'm thinking of something colorful (as with your typical palette). Maybe with a slight emphasis on orange & light blue/aqua colors. I want the piece to portray the emotions of happiness, laughter, compassion, love & connection (like a circle of life or we are all connected in some spiritual way). I like whimsical & natural elements (animals, tulips, trees, butterflies...) which is I adore your work! I also have not yet looked into a blank custom toy. Do you happen to know of any pandas? Can you paint a panda or several pandas? "
Then I kept browsing every different shapes / styles of custom blank toys like Munny, Dunny, etc... until I found Yoka on Flickr. Yoka is perfect for Brenda's requests. So I made sketches & sent them to her through email. After one month I waited for her, she finally replied to me & loved them all.
I figured it out that her dad passed away after battling his liver cancer for 18 months so Brenda was very behind on her emails. I felt so sorry, my deepest condolences... Then Brenda changed her mind and gave me new art requests: " On that somber note, I was also wondering if we can do a little tribute to my dad on that toy? Perhaps we can add a small drawing off to the side of the toy of a father holding hands with a a little girl / daughter & mother, or rooster, ox, rat, horse & dog? (they are based on Chinese zodiac signs of Brenda's family - her husband, brother & auntie). " Then she showed me her old family pictures from 1972 & 1975 (I really dig on their vintage photos, they looked quite clear like digital camera!) for my reference & my inspiration. But she explained to me that her parents were divorced.
And my final rough sketches. But I changed my few revisions (you guys will watch my Yoka video on YouTube below).
click to see this full LARGE VIEW.
Brenda created a new name for Yoka toy, "Xiong Mao Bao Bao" means panda baby in mandarin chinese. It's pronounced "Shong" with a long "o" sound.
Now, you guys are ready to watch my full Yoka video. I filmed with my Panasonic GF1 camera + Lumix 20mm f/1.7 pancake lens + Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 (handheld + tripod) and Nokton 50mm f/1.1 (tilt-shift technique by my hands). I can't upload my 600MB video on Vimeo because of 500MB per week only. So I chose YouTube, glad it's free.
TAKE NOTE: If you have a fast internet connection, I recommend you to use HD video (720p) on YouTube so the HD video image looks beautifully professionally clearer. When you have a slow internet, please change it from 720p to 480p / 360p. Enjoy viewing!
I cried when I said goodbye to Yoka. At least I'm happy that Brenda is happy to have him like a new family. Thank you so much for everything, Brenda!