Ephemeron and Ephemera
Ephemeron (singular) and Ephemera (plural) mean ‘short-lived’. The titles refer to the transitory state of being maiko in particular, and to youth and beauty in general. Both maiko in these two small drawings; Mameyuri and Katsuyuki, have long ago given up this traditional life and are fully back in the modern world.
The photographs which I used as source photos for these drawings were taken by Lucy, my youngest daughter, in 2007 when she was 13 years old. We joined a photo-shoot in the streets of Gion and decided to hang in there unless somebody told us to go away. Nobody did so we took many photos of Mameyuri and Katsuyuki. Lucy can still remember my telling her not to delete ANYTHING off her camera – including blurry photos.
Below is another drawing I did (in 2010) from the same 2007 photo-shoot. It is also drawn from one of Lucy’s photos. We sure had fun together, Lucy and I!
It seems like just the other day that Lucy and I were photographing in Kyoto together, yet she had barely entered teenage-hood. Today, a young woman of 22, she is the age of a geiko and is pursuing her own artistic career in Sydney.
Related page: An Exceptional Day in Gion
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