Asakura Kouhei’s world where animals and the elements meet
Japanese illustrator Asakura Kouhei’s world is one where animals and the four elements – fire, water, air and earth – live in harmony within a psychedelic playground, executed with rainbow watercolors and acrylics.
The Tokyo-born Kouhei grew up close to nature, in a place rich with greenery and filled with magic. It was at the age of three that he recalls wanting to become an artist after his father, who went fishing, came home with a rainbow trout. The distinct colors and features of the fish inspired the young Kouhei to draw the rainbow trout, and with it was planted a deep fascination for nature and color that is so recognizably Azakura Kouhei’s stamp.
Kouhei began to expand his technical skills at high school where he learnt to work with oil paints. But it is the combination of watercolor and acrylics that dominates the artist’s work today. He focuses on translating nature’s journey through acrylic, watercolor, and unique color and pattern combinations.
Austrian painter Egon Schiele, renowned for his erotic art, has been an influence on Kouhei’s work. Schiele’s meticulous attention to detail in his line drawings is something that Kouhei has developed in his art.
Kouhei’s colorful prism adds vibrancy, boldness and purity in his translations of Mother Earth and all her marvels. How nature and humans co-exist is a theme that runs across Kouhei’s paintings. It is the desire to explore the way humans and nature live together that Japanese wildlife photographer, Michio Hoshino, championed that inspired Kouhei.
In an interview with The Well Pennies, Kouhei explained: “Michio Hoshino was a photographer who lived in Alaska. He wanted to know about the way humans and nature live together. I was inspired by his vision of nature.”
“The world is shaped by a big energy of nature,” Kouhei added. “I am made by a lot of particles that have been travelling around the world since the universe started. The particle might have been rain, bear or mountain.”
It’s Kouhei’s analogy of the “particle” that is so prominent in his paintings be it a physical manifestation of a mountain, bear, sun, antelope, water or fish.
A popular presence on Behance since 2012, Kouhei has been showcasing his work to international acclaim. In 2014, he won the Tokyo Independent Exhibition award. And more recently, his work featured on The Well Pennies, ‘Endlings’, album cover.
Picture credits: Asakura Kouhei
Rosalind Medea is Life & Soul Magazine @ https://lifeandsoulmagazine.com . She is a writer specializing in sustainable life & style, music, entertainments and well being. Rosalind also works as a spiritual life coach and intuitive advisor helping people to become who they truly are and manifest their heart & soul’s desires into their lives: https://rosalindmedea.com/