The Neglected Feast of the Aka-name


⊛ The Neglected Feast of the Aka-name
⊛ cut + torn paper / wood
⊛ 7.9 x 7.9 in • 200 x 200 mm


Little Aka-name here is a warrior. I thought I would have this piece done by the end of last week, but she fought me tooth and nail...despite all evidence indicating that the filth-licker has no teeth, and precious few nails. The real troublemakers were those eyes. After all, how does one go about finding the right expression for a ghost? Too much understanding and emotion, and she loses that supernatural feel. Not enough and the eyes just look flat and dead. In the end, I think I found the expression I wanted; something with some intelligence and maybe just the hint that somewhere in there she might understand just how nasty her meal is. I'm also happy with the papers I found for the skin and tongue, with their wet, gooey feel.

I've been doing so many Japanese ghosts lately, a person might think it was leading somewhere. Hurm. In addition to any nefarious plans I may or may not have up my spectral sleeves, I'll be submitting her to Fantagraphics, which has an open invite out to all creeps and critters for their second volume of Beasts!

Aka-name was also meant to go up on IF last week. It should be the first of multiple pieces I post this week. Illustration Friday

Here's what I wrote about Aka-name previously:

...the winner of the lottery for weirdness, grossness, and just plain wrongness has to be poor little Aka-name. Literally translated as “filth-licker”, Aka-name adores the flavor of the uncared-for bath, along with whatever mold, fungi, and general ick grows in the tub. The traditional Japanese bath was made of wood, and often tended to be in a part of the house that didn’t see much sun. Add in a humid summer and general neglect, and the result is a slippery, slimy stew that had a tendency to accumulate frogs and slugs. Nice, huh?

The theory is that the pink-hued Aka-name is a beneficial ghost, cleaning up your mess for you. Still, having a ghost in the house brings with it a general feeling of uneasiness. When you walk by your bathroom, do the hairs on the back of your neck stand up? Your stomach feel a bit queasy? It might be time to do a little scrubbing. Better wait until morning, though. Nobody likes to be interrupted in the middle of a meal.