18 April, 2012

Ikebana 2011: free style arrangements

I was sorting through photos from 2011 on the computer and found several folders with snapshots of  ikebana arrangements from our Monday classes.  Unfortunately not all images were good; the lighting in our "practice room" is usually rather low.  It is also quite challenging to take a two-dimensional photo that would give justice to a three-dimensional creation.  But I keep practicing; documenting my ideas, materials we get to work with, and different styles I learn.

Each class we make at least 2 arrangements: one traditional (like these or these) and one free style (aka contemporary, aka modern).  In preparation for my first ikebana exam I've been practicing a lot of upright Nageire-style arrangements. 
Nageire means "thrown in".  According to a story one of the greatest ikebana masters came home with several flowers and simply threw them in a tall vase, making a gorgeous arrangement and thus beginning the tradition of upright Nageire ikebana.  I am light years away from being able to simply throw flowers into a beautiful arrangement but I am definitely getting more comfortable working with tall vases and without kenzans (flower frogs used to support flowers in low, "flat" arrangements).

Back to photos: to compensate for the low quality of images, I've used Photoshop polaroid action, removed the white Polaroid frame, and made a collage of my most memorable free style arrangements.

By the way, if you are in Montreal this weekend (April 21 and 22) come to Botanical Gardens to enjoy annual Ikebana International exposition - WELCOME, SWALLOWS.


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