Who Else Feels Strange? My Artist Talk About Being Strange & Creating Strange Art

I came, I saw, I kicked ass….or at least, that’s what I’d like to say about my artist talk last week. Instead, I came with strange questions and left behind some strange answers. I felt fine, during it, talking about being strange and creating strange art. Afterward, I felt awkward and vulnerable and like…like….I dunno…..like…I didn’t fit in. I guess that’s just the risk you take when you put yourself out there. Maybe, that’s just sort of the postpartum depression after giving birth to a talk. I dunno. I didn’t expect that. Let me know if you watch my talk and what you think of it. You can see it by clicking on the photo below.

Melissa Kojima at her artist talk on August 9, 2019 at PDX Commons.  Click on the photo above to watch her full artist talk.

Melissa Kojima at her artist talk on August 9, 2019 at PDX Commons. Click on the photo above to watch her full artist talk.

Mysterious Masked Face Sculptures That Are Also Planters

I’ve been seeing the cutest planters in stores like ones with cat and bunny ears or even a funny, little face on one side. Of course, this makes for a most amusing place to pot your favorite house plant. Imagine the “green hair” growing in with the cat ears or the funny face. They made me smile, so I thought about buying them. Instead, I decided to create my own version. Being an artist of strange things, I thought I could make mine better, or at least, a little, more strange.


They ended up taking a lot more time than I thought they would…a total of about 1 month. Maybe, they were worth the effort. They certainly came out mysterious with those masks. And maybe, they are a little ghostly with so much white skin and clothing. Do you have any funny planters? Would you like a face to make your plant have more personality? Do you think these two planters are part of a Secret Society of Magical Creataures?

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.

SSMC at TEDx Mt.Hood 2018-1.jpg

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.

SSMC at TEDx Mt.Hood 2018-2.jpg

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.

Wizard World Comic Con Here I Come (Armed with Strange Art)!

Come February 22-24, 2019, I will, for first time ever, be an artist in the Artist Alley at Wizard World Comic Con in Portland, OR. I’m nervous but I’m armed with strange art. I have no idea what to expect, yet I have this nightmare that no one will come to my table. If by chance they do, they’ll look at my art and poo-poo it. Their noses will turn up as they strut away as if they got a wiff of stinking garbage.


Fears aside, I will put my best foot—-errr——my best art forward. What do I have in mind? What’s the plan? Lots of good things I hope you’ll come see. I’m thinking zines, paper toys, prints and of course some original art. Ghost girls. Night time magic. Moons. Masks. The Secret Society of Magical Creatures. These will all play a role in the strange art I display at my Artist Alley Table. I’ll give you some sneak peeks in the weeks to come.


Lastly, Why Not Have a Mysterious Holiday!

Being strange (are you too?), I could not possibly make a normal holiday card. I mean really? Come on! Why would I choose anything but strange? So with my cohort in strangeness (my beau, my soulmate, the love of my life), we created the strangest of holiday cards. We decided to wish everyone on our holiday card list a MYSTERIOUS and MAGICAL holiday. Do you think donning, paper, bunny masks and pretending we were sitting for a tintype photo where we couldn’t move for several minutes (but managed to move anyway and blur the image) did the trick? I mean, was it a great way to put some mystery into the old holiday tradition?


Whatever you think, I hope you do enjoy this holiday season and do something that delights your heart. I think wearing masks is great. How about sporting some animal ears? Anyone for a visit to the Peculiar Museum (Yes, we have that here in Portland, Oregon)?

Here are the outtakes from the photo booth that didn’t make it into the holiday card. I hope they make you laugh. We did when they came out freshly wet from the booth slot. Don’t we look like we’re part of some secret society, especially in that very last one where we are turned to the left? Well, maybe we are. Maybe, we are (wink, wink).


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.

The Top 10 Reasons You Watch Fantasy Adventure Movies

How many of these movies have you watched?  

Harry Potter....

Fantastic Creatures and Where to Find Them....

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children....

Alice in Wonderland....

Percy Jackson & The Olympians....

Spirited Away....


And how many more am a I forgetting that belong on this list?  If any of them make your heart race a little faster when you think of them, then you and I are of the same world. We love these fantasy adventure movies.  We can't get enough of them.  At some point, you'd think we'd get sick of them.  But we don't.  

Why do we keep watching these kinds of movies, the Secret Society of Magical Creatures has some ideas. In Secret Message #24, they reveal the top 10 reason we'll always watch fantasy adventure movies. Click on the link above, to get the secrets.

Who Else Wants Magical Powers? The Top 10 Magical Powers

Have you ever wanted magical powers?  Wouldn't they be handy if you wanted to avoid an annoying neighbor or get even with someone who made fun of you?

In Secret Message #23, The Secret Society of Magical Creatures reveals the top 10 most wanted magical powers and why you want them.  Click on the link above to be taken to the secrets.

The Secret Society of Magical Creatures  has many ways to use magical powers.

The Secret Society of Magical Creatures has many ways to use magical powers.

Yes, There's Actually A Secret Coloring Book to Teach You A Secret Language

Have you ever wanted to be a member of a secret club with exclusive rights and privileges?  I'm nodding yes. And if that club happened to be all about magic and mystery, would that make it twice as intriguing?  I'm nodding yes even harder.  Now, if there was such a club and if you got into it, would it mean that you were something special?  Ummm.....YES.....you bet it would!  I think that's what the Secret Society of Magical Creatures is all about.  

And guess what?  They have a secret language that they teach you in secret messages as well as in their secret language book.  Below are some of the drawings before and after they were colored by a secret member of the secret society who owns the book.

Can you guess what these words mean?  Hmm...I'm not sure.  Whatever their meanings, they sure look mysterious and magical.  And what better way to learn a new language than in a magical coloring book!  Below is the secret link to get your secret language coloring book.  Now, you'll be able to feel extra special with exclusive rights and privileges that only magical creatures have!