Keiko's unique approach to ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arranging, combines traditional techniques with modern tastes. Her influences—which range from sculpture to today's Western floral design—come together to create one-of-a-kind arrangements that are authentic and eye-catching, simple and graceful, and possible for anyone to achieve.
This book presents step-by-step instructions for creating 20 stunning ikebana arrangements in a range of sizes and styles. Each of the flower arrangements can be completed in just three simple steps and uses easy-to-find floral materials and containers. The book also includes an introduction to the history of ikebana as it relates to Japan and Japanese culture, as well as a guide to the basic rules of ikebana design and floral techniques. Suggestions for finding and choosing materials and supplies make it easy to learn how to arrange flowers and gain a hands-on appreciation of the art of Japanese flower arranging.
Kubo brings her skills as a sculptor, certified ikebana instructor and student of Western floral design to this introduction to the traditional Japanese art form, which includes directions for 20 arrangements. The author describes her approach to ikebana as a freestyle mix of classical principles and contemporary Western design. By playing with three main elements (line, volume and accent), Kubo says, even beginners can create a wide variety of designs that bring out the inherent beauty of flowers, leaves, branches and other natural materials. She provides a concise history of ikebana, dating to the sixth-century custom of offering flowers to Buddha; explains styles that have developed up to the present day; and discusses ikebana's close ties to Japanese architecture and culture. Kubo also gives brief but thorough descriptions of the tools and techniques readers will need to master, as well as a list of resources for supplies. Kubo's respectful but eclectic take on tradition is refreshing. Novice practitioners will likely welcome her less-is-more philosophy, in which a minimum of materials are transformed into satisfying art forms. Beautifully illustrated with color photographs by Erich Schrempp, the book is an elegant reminder of nature's subtle ability to nurture the human spirit.