I’ve finally decided to bite the bullet and launch my wasenmodeler site. I’ve been posting my work on my shipmodeler blog for a while now, but there have been stretches when I’ve been working a lot on Japanese traditional boats, or Wasen. So, I started a page on my site, Japanese Watercraft.
Since I began my first Japanese wooden boat, my work has matured a lot, and I’m giving a talk together with boatbuilder Douglas Brooks at the 2016 Nautical Research Guild conference in San Diego in October (my segment is on modeling Japanese boats, and it will be very short). In addition, I’ve been scheduled to do one of the roundtable discussions there on modeling Japanese boats. And, now that I’m finally heading to Japan for a week of research and networking, it seems that the time has come to spin off wasenmodeler as a stand-alone blog site.
Of course, this is just getting off the ground, so I’m just beginning to build content and create new site pages. Now, visitors who are interested in Japanese boats and their models no longer have to wade through my ship modeler posts about building english sailing ship models in paper, etc.
I do want to point out that this is actually a massive topic. Even though I’ve been building Japanese boat models for a couple years now, I’m only just now scratching the surface. The more I learn, the more I discover how limited my knowledge is. The amount of available information in English is minimal, and it really helps not only to be able to read Japanese, but to actually be in Japan to access information first-hand. I neither read much Japanese (just a few words and can read the phonetic alphabets), or speak much Japanese (better than I read). Nor do I live in Japan.
But, heavy use of scanning and OCR, the trackpad handwriting recognition technology and Japanese language input system on my Mac, and a good network of helpful friends and associates (ship modelers, maritime experts, Japanese boat builders, and native Japanese speakers) helps to overcome some of these obstacles.
So, please bear with me while I work my way through the subject and building up the content here. In the meantime, make sure to check out these links:
- Nippon Foundation Library
- Thermal Studio Blog – Building the Tosa Wasen Kit
- Japanese Shipwright Apprentice Blog
- Woody Joe