MOONS & NIGHT TIME MAGIC GIRLS FOR THE WIZARD WORLD COMIC CON (WIP PART III)

Here’s another peek at my desk as I get ready for the Wizard World Comic at the end of February. This is going to be “Lady Bat” and she will be available to purchase at my artist alley table. I’ll keep giving you more peeks in the weeks to come. If you do come, please use my discount code: KOJIMA20 for 20% off on admission price.

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The Secret Society of Magical Creatures Gets Strange at TEDx Mt. Hood 2018

Yes, this was one of the strangest…..dare I say, magical….opportunities that the Secret Society of Magical Creatures had last year. I didn’t get many photos to share with you of my TEDx Mt. Hood presentation, because….well, you know….I was presenting and couldn’t take photos. Not to mention, In the dark with candles on all the tables, it was hard to get a good, clear shot of the action. Officially, my presentation was called, “an action break”, in which participants could choose an activity to do between talks. The Secret Society of Magical Creatures was 1 of 4 activities to choose from. Fortunately, there was a professional, TEDx photographer to capture some of the strangeness .…er…magic.

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Another very fortunate thing was that Blick Art Materials helped sponsor my presentation. It was so nice to get some support and encouragement for this strange society which seeks to help you find your magical quest.

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I took the participants through the first few secret documents from the “How to Discover Your Magical Creature and Magical Quest Book”. You can see the cover of the book above as it was projected on a white board. Some participants got brave and shared what they discovered with the entire group, including their magical creature. I found it very touching and many of us applauded their bravery.

If you’d like to buy your own copy of this very secret and magical book…..er…maybe…strange is more accurate, I’m offering a magical discount on it for 1 week until Jan 22, 2019 . Use code MAGIC75 to get 75% off the regular price.

Second of All, Here's to Celebrating Rare, Magical and Strange Things!

I was talking to an artist friend and we were discussing how rare it is to get a holiday card, let alone a homemade card from someone. I’ve been fortunate to get a few…not yet this year but in previous years. Have you gotten any yet? They truly are special to me…you could even say, they’re magical. This friend and I asked each other if we kept those homemade cards. Yes. Yep. Usually, we did. Some of the recipients of our homemade cards have told us they keep them too. They have a little special stash from all the years. Strangely, others have told us they threw them away.

“Celebrate Magic” homemade Card for a friend.

“Celebrate Magic” homemade Card for a friend.

Why did they tell us that? My artist friend thought they might be trying to relieve some guilt over NOT keeping them. I don’t know. I don’t know how people feel when they receive a homemade card from me. Do you they feel magic? Do they feel like celebrating? Do they feel special? My hope is that they will feel all those things because I created it especially with them in mind. I mean, they inspired what I decided to do. It wasn’t random. I thought about who they are and how warmly I feel about them. I thought about their smile and the things they like.

If nothing else, this is another thing that just makes me strange and different from everyone else. Okay, okay…you say special….still…..I say strange.

Ten by Ten Art Show, Featuring My Whimsical Sculpture, The Plantimals

It was a fun night at the Jill McVarish Gallery in Astoria, Oregon. We saw a woman in a very smart red suit, a pretty, little girl who talked about going to Paris and drawing, and we learned about water soluable oil paints (with which Jill McVarish paints). Oh, and of course, we saw my whimsical sculptures, The Plantimals. Below are a few photos of the lovely evening.

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SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! So Much Of My Strange Art Selling!

Yes, I've been selling my strange artwork!  I'm so amazed!  I don't know......I just am always tickled when someone likes my art enough to buy it.  I don't know if I'll ever get used it it.  It's one thing to say you like it and to come to see my art shows or events, but it's a whole different level of admiration when you actually commit to buying it.  Below are artworks that have found new, happy homes because they SOLD, SOLD, SOLD!  Thank you so much!   It means so much to me! 

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Is Sasquatch A Magical Creature? (The Work in Progress of My Sasquatch Painting)

You know what?  I don't know if Sasquatch is a magical creature.  What do you think?  I don't know if he exists.  I don't know what he's looking for or if he has already found it.  What I know is that he is a part of the Pacific Wonderland, the place I call my home which is why I chose to paint him for ZB Gallery's "This Pacific Wonderland" art show.  

A magical creature drawing for  the Secret Society of Magical Creatures .

A magical creature drawing for the Secret Society of Magical Creatures.

In some way, I had already gotten in touch with the spirit of the Sasquatch when I was creating drawings for the Secret Society of Magical Creatures.  I drew an Omni (your guide on your magical quest in the Secret Society of Magical Creatures) as a big hairy creature who was going on an adventure with a little bunny girl.

A quick sketch for the Sasquatch painting.

A quick sketch for the Sasquatch painting.

When ZB Gallery invited me to be in their art show, I came back to that Omni drawing and decided to make it into a Sasquatch.  Of course, I still wanted him to be with a bunny girl and to still be going on an adventure.

The final drawing for the Sasquatch painting.

The final drawing for the Sasquatch painting.

I imagined the two of them having a serious conversation before they decided to proceed up the hill into the darkness towards Pittock Mansion.  Bunny girl would tug on Sasquatch's hand and say, "Hey".  And Sasquatch would look down at her and say, "What?"  And they would hash it out and puzzle it over and figure out if it was a good idea to go up there or not.

What do you think they are saying to each other?  Whatever it is, they seem like they are going to be good friends and look out for each other.  They know it's a scary, cold world out there and it's better to travel through it with good friends.  

You can buy this painting through ZB Gallery at this link.

Here's What Happens When a Sasquatch Hooks Up With a Bunny Girl (My Pacific Wonderland Painting)

I'm surprised how many great opportunities keep finding me from doing all those sidewalk chalk drawings.  Most recently, a gallery (ZB Gallery in Sherwood, OR)  saw my chalk drawings on Instagram and wanted my art in their gallery.  That is always flattering to hear that your art is wanted.  They invited me to their "Pacific Wonderland" group art show, asking me to create work that showed what I loved about the Pacific Northwest.  I thought about it.  Well, it's the spooky stories about serial killers and sasquatches, bunny girls that you meet at cafes, mysterious landscapes and old creepy buildings, like Pittock Mansion

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What would I get if I put all those things together in one image?  What would happen if a sasquatch and a bunny girl hooked up?  Where would it be?  What would they do?  In my world, this would be quite an innocent hooking up. I thought they'd go on an adventure together under the cloak of night and guided by starlight.

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As you can see, I managed to get those 2 characters together in my painting.  I think they are going to have a lot of fun wherever they go.  The gallery was delighted to receive it and added it to their promos for the show.  I was thrilled to get such great exposure of my painting.

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I made the journey out to Sherwood (30 minutes south of downtown Portland) for the opening night and met the gallery owners.  They were so kind and appreciative of my art.  I really was touched by their interest in what I'm creating.  They even asked if they might convince me to do a solo show with them in the future.  I would definitely think about it.  If you're interested in purchasing my little "Pacific Wonderland" painting, please contact the gallery.  Below is my statement and bio for the show.

Bio: Illustrator Melissa Kojima thinks she is ill-fitted to her pint-sized human form and sometimes fancies herself as a black, fire breathing dragon because it would more adequately house her larger than life personality and energy. With her verve and vivacity, she has been creating strange, mysterious and magical art for over 20 years. Some of her favorite projects have been to create; fantastical animal opera masks for the Loyola Marymount University opera department, a downloadable DIY, paper fairy mobile for a children’s website in New Zealand and a chalk art story hunt about a mermaid all over downtown Portland, Oregon. She has sold art in galleries and been hired to illustrate many books. She is currently working on a series of ghost paintings and fantastical creature sculptures. If you want to have a peek into her strange, secret world, visit: www.melissakojima.net or www.SecretSocietyofMagicalCreatures.com


Statement: “Pacific Wonderland” was a perfect theme for my fantastical artwork because people always tell me my work reminds them of “Alice in Wonderland” and because I love living here in the Pacific Northwest. In my painting, which has the same name as the theme of the show, I imagined a magical moment when a sasquatch befriends a bunny girl (a reoccurring character in my artwork) and they decide to go on an adventure to Pittock Mansion. The Pacific Northwest is a place of strange tales, mysterious landscapes and many places to go on adventures. I hope my painting has captured that.