A long time ago in a galaxy far, far... OK a couple of years ago in Cambridge (The one in England not the one in Masachusetts.) I had the opportunity to do a shoot of Japanese style rope bondage with English photographer Rodm and a model who's name I cannot now happily remember... happily for her because she flaked on the shoot with zero notice. Luckily Rod was able to get a replacement who very kindly came to the shoot at very short notice. This model was Gestalta and she was a real pleasure to work with. I think we got some really great stuff in the end. I was particularly happy with the Hojo hishi nawa. I think generally the shibari in this shoot works well and Rod captured the bondage and the mood. So these are some bondage pictures I'm very happy to have been involved in making. All credit though to our great model Gestalta (who has since modelled for, amongst others, Kazami Ranki notably in performance at the Festival of the Art of Japanese bondage).
Part 1 This week we shall (thanks to clover) be going to study newaza with grand master Yukimura Haruki. I am SO excited to be doing this. It's a wonderful opportunity to learn from one of the very best! It's always exciting for me to have an opportunity to learn so as the date approaches I'm really starting to feel the excitement. Clover surprised me with this trip for my birthday treat, how cool is that? I'll be blogging about the experience afterwards but for now... how cool is that? Part 2 What a really good learning experience does is open your mind to new possibilites, possibilities you hadn't suspected before. Further it gives you a way into those new experiences. One thing that I think is worth emphasising is the tremendous contribution that the interpreters made to this class. In a large part due to the fact that not only were they there because they spoke excellent Japanese but also they were students of Yukimura Sensei and therefore understood what they were translating and could also spot the mistakes that we made during the day. They were very much part of making the day what it was. The grand master is also known for his calligraphy skills and it was a great surprise to receive this calligraphied board on the day. Through watching videos of the grand master tying I had some idea of what Yukimura Sensei was about but learning from him showed how easy it is to fail to understand what someone is really doing from just watching. I had thought that a large part of what he was doing was not so to speak 'in the visible range' and that proved to [...]