An e-mail from a designer in Spain

The Tadaima Japan team received an e-mail from a designer and illustrator from Tarragona, Spain, onhis impressions of Japan after visiting twice.

A copy of his e-mail:

Here you have my feelings and inspirations:
I fell in love with Japan, its people and culture, when I first visited. The feeling was so strong that I felt the need to return to see if it was due just to the ‘culture shock’ or if a second visit would reaffirm and even strengthen the feeling.
During the first few days of my second visit to Japan I realized quickly that my love affair with this country was not a passing affair. Whilst it’s true that the ‘culture shock’ wasn’t as strong as the first time, it’s also true that nothing can ever compare to the sensations provoked by the first time. But this time round I felt I was able better to appreciate the very special Japanese way of being and doing, which felt like a breath of fresh air.
Japan is a country of established order, where thousands of people, illuminated by giant billboards, can cross the street and not bump into each other and where rivers of people can stream into the metro in rush hour without causing an overflow.
These impressions (which may be wrong or skewed given the short time I was there) make me think of Japan as a country of movement and rest. I like to represent movement by lines – lines which show where movement starts, finishes and the way and direction it takes. These lines, which may be literal or
figurative, also flank the rest, which is represented by the colour white so as to let the whole composition breath. At the moment I like playing with cut-outs of images and characters that I come across, and can then place in this world.
Japan is a country that spins you round, and sets the pace, but at the same time provides you with the space and rest you need just at the moment when you most need it.
Through illustrating this book, I have tried to transmit to the reader the same sensations and feelings I experienced with the same subtlety and softness that this very special country transmitted them to me.
I sincerely hope that you like it.
Kind regards.

After receiving his e-mail, The Tadaima Japan team questioned him about his choice of Japan as a travel destination.

Q: Why did you choose Japan as your travel destination?
A: I chose Japan because, as always, I wanted to learn new things and I wanted to be surprised by a different culture. In fact, there is no single reason, I just only wanted to confirm if, all I knew of Japan was true.

Q: Was there any reason or trigger, such as “Yes, I should go to Japan because ~~~”?
A: There was not a single thing, it was a set of things that made me decide to visit Japan,especially the positive comments that friends of mine had given me from their trips to Japan.

Q: Before coming to Japan, what impression did you have?
A: I thought Japan was an orderly and structured country, culturally different from mine, with strong convictions. After that I continued thinking the same, Japan is well ordered and different, but in a way that makes me feel comfortable, loved, and welcomed.In fact, travel serves to confirm or deny everything we believe we know.

What is impression of Japan as foreign people see, which Japanese won’t notice?

Mr.Josep Serra Virgili who sent us above emails, also sent a linked
URL of the YouTube video for his collage that he made during his stay
in Japan to us.
As he said, this a group of collages that he collected to explain his vision of Japan.Please check it out.
“Tadaima” by Josep Serra

This is a scrapbook of his vision of Japan while visiting.
Don’t you feel like you can get a sense of his feelings towards Japan, which strongly touched his heart?
He’s THE artist, so his expression is simple and cool!
He is like an impressionist painter, who expresses his perceptions and experiences.
Additionally, this is the linked URL for his design company ”mènsula studio”.
Please check this if you’d like.
mènsula studio:

As he said in his e-mail, it is interesting to express countries or towns of different cultures using “lines”.
Tokyo is certainly a fast-moving town, where many people move to their destination, slipping through a crowd of people with an impassive face.
If I look at the scenery from a viewpoint on the sideline, I feel like expressing it with lines.
But ways of expression differ from person to person. It might be interesting to embody impressions that are intensely strong, or that deeply touch our heart and are never forgotten, even if you didn’t care very much at the time.
You might believe you know your country or town very well, but you may be able to find a new side when you look at ordinary sceneries from a different view.

Tadaima Japan team would like to know about what you felt during your stay in Japan.
We’re looking forward to your e-mails!

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Tadaima Japan Editorial Team

Tadaima Japan Editorial Team

Tadaima Japan Editorial Team

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