I’ve participated in a great deal of artist trading card swaps, and most recently, I had the chance to add Kokeshi doll art to my collection. While most swaps follow a 3-for-3 arrangement, we had the choice to make either 3 or 6 cards for this swap. I chose the latter so that I could receive more dolls, and really, creating these small pieces of art for this theme was pretty addicting.
What is a Kokeshi Doll?
Considered a lucky charm in the Japanese culture, Kokeshi started out as handmade wooden dolls typically dressed in kimono-styled designs. The most distinguishable characteristics of Kokeshi dolls are round heads (often larger than their smaller, limbless bodies). Other features include distinct hairstyles, rosy cheeks, the absence of arms, and intricate detail.
The Cards I Made…
Materials Used: glitter gel pens, metallic gel pens, fine-point Sharpie pens, and colored pencils
Each of my Kokeshi dolls either wears a flower in her hair, or has flowers incorporated into her wardrobe. The majority of the dolls feature Zentangle patterns. Although you cannot tell from the photos, all of the doll’s hair either glitters or shines in some way.
After participating in the swap, I had to make a couple more because I could not part with two of my cards. I kept the dolls featured at the top of this post for my own personal collection of cards.
The Cards that I Received
And, here are the Kokeshi dolls that I received from artists hailing from Pennsylvania, Vermont, Ohio, North Carolina, Seneca Falls, NY, and Rochester, NY:
JuliaRyo’s ‘Rainmother’ reminds me of classic Japanese ink drawings – I love the black, blue and white color scheme.
I love the hairstyle of Kimmie’s doll…and her purple outfit too. The last card is made by prex79 (I love getting her cards). This one has hints of shiny gold pen that you can’t really see, and I think she’s a master with alcohol ink pens.
Artist trading card swaps are organized by individual hosts, who collect everyone’s cards and make sure you receive an equal amount of art in return. CiCiCreates was the swap host, and she sent everyone a unique mini Kokeshi doll card as a ‘thank you’ for participating. How thoughtful!