Friday, 15 July 2011

Murakami Makes his mark at the Gagosian

To find out why EVERY otaku in the UK should be making their way down to the Gagosian Gallery in London by the 5th of August this year, head on over to my report on this remarkable exhibition by seminal pop art superstar Takashi Murakami at Otaku News.

Murakami's lastest collaborations bring together the talents of bishojo designers TONY (Shining Tears), KEI (Voclaoid), Oyari Ashito (LittleWitch) and Matsuyama Seiji (Eiken). It is a unique collection that celebrates the talent and beauty that has blossoms in the contemporary commercial art realm.

All artworks © Takashi Murakami/KaiKai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved
Photography by Muir Vilder/Courtesy of the Gagosian Gallery

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Ms. Fan Stand by sculptor Momiji

Following hot on the heels of one of the most exciting occasions for figure collectors and creators alike, attendees at February’s Wonder Festival sent slew of sensational images across the internet. Coverage from the otaku community is loaded with the luscious delights from inside the show. Through these visual reports we get a view of future stars from both the mass production industry and straight from original sources - the creators themselves. It is the venue for illustrious exhibits that introduce the most desirable pieces soon to be available from major manufacturers. These typically get the most attention from collectors outside of Japan who are looking to see what forthcoming wonders will be popping up for preorder, however, many gems of the show, are often the beauties we may never come to know.
Thanks to an encounter at last year’s MCM London Expo in October, I have recently been given unique insight into the world of figure sculpting by exceptional rising artist Momiji. Building all his works from scratch, Momiji’s works is unlike anything I have seen before in all my years of figure collecting. He presents a remarkably fresh fusion of figure and functionality. His creations are uniquely attractive and present mature and deftly executed design. Momiji’s aesthetics combine the kind of lithe elegance and finesse of one of Alter’s renditions of characters crafted by Saitou Fumiki with a conceptual quality that gives them a sharp edge of chic.

At the London MCM Expo, Momiji presented “Ms. Glasses Holder” a lady who literally puts the fetish for girls with glasses on a pedestal. The central figure is a secretarial stunner who helpfully serves as a sultry receptacle to store a pair of spectacles. A split in the back of her pencil skirt is open an invitation for the eye to enjoy the curves of her slender form.
Following along on the theme of the skirt with a split seam, Momiji’s latest creation first unveiled at Wonderfest, is the exquisite “Ms. Fan Stand”. This China girl is leggy beauty who exudes coquettish charm with the composition of fan and cheongsam.

Momiji was kind enough to share some shots of her with me and to return the favour, I shall share them here!

She wears a long glossy red gown of silk that shifts and plays over every curve giving life and motion to her fabulous form. The amber sash she clasps in her hand dances about her body as she summons it to follow her stride.
Despite the air of elegance there is something so wonderfully wicked about Ms. Fan Stand. Her eyes with their bright accents of red shine sweetly at you. The curl of a smile is barely visible above the crescent of her fan, something that makes her almost demure. However, there is a punch line to this modest façade as behind the fan the mischievous minx is poking out her tongue!
Curves echo throughout the composition of both figure and holder. She stands upon a dainty plinth flanked by the pretty fan that unfurls in an arch that creates the foundation of the stand.
The ornamental quality of the piece exhibits an exquisite asymmetry evocative of a Zen garden at twilight. I imagine the scent sweet jasmine and the sultry glow of lanterns as I gaze at this girl. Momiji is relatively new to the figure scene and has been actively sculpting for little more than two years. This is not only a remarkable achievement and testament to his craftsmanship but an inspiring thought when one wonders what he will envision and compose next. What does the future hold in store for Mojimi’s series of conceptual creations? I for one cannot wait for the next piece to be revealed...

Momiji's blog can be seen here.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Hyper Japan - Event Report

Gadzooks, it's been a long time since I last made a post here at Priss blog - BUT the report for my recent adventures at Hyper Japan in London is now up on Otaku News. Hyper Japan was a unique experience and a great occasion for Japanese culturephiles and figure fans alike with guests such as Goodsmile Company and Hobby Japan. I am looking forward to the return of this convention in 2011 and if you'd like find out why follow me (^_~)

Monday, 21 June 2010

Cat's Crumble - Rhubarb & Apple Crumble Recipe

Before I return to my typical topic of reviewing figures, I’m going to post about one of my other passions – cooking.
Sunday 19th July in the UK was Father’s Day and for me, that means one very important duty I must fulfil as a daughter – making crumble. Now, given the choice, “what would you like, apple or rhubarb crumble?” it was to be apple AND rhubarb... something for which I didn’t have a recipe of in my repertoire. Thus follows my own spin on the classic sweet treat adapted from a dozen adventures with Delia Smith dishes.
Crumble is the quintessential traditional British comfort cooking. It takes and makes the best of seasonal fruits, splicing and dicing them together in a spiced, sweet and sharp ensemble all buried under beautiful layers of buttery crumble topping.
When it cooks, the spices sing out amidst the rich aroma of the baked topping and the fragrance of the fruits within, bubbling away in the sultry depths of the hot oven.
For my Dad it’s irresistible. For me, it’s all about the fruit. I like it not too sweet and liberal with the crumble, the buttered crumb with scattered traces of Demerara sugar subsiding into the tender spiced fruit with just a teeny splosh of custard. Again, the conditions of crumble, according to my Father state that there is only one custard – Bird's.

In summer, crumble marries well with a nice vanilla ice cream (Haagen Dazs or Green & Black’s make excellenf choices).

Rhubarb and Apple Crumble

Serves 6


♥ 600g rhubarb
♥ 500g Braeburn apples
♥ 75-110g of golden caster sugar (adjust to taste)
♥ 1 heaped teaspoon of freshly grated root ginger
♥ 1 level teaspoon of ground cinnamon
♥ A dash of brandy
Crumble topping:
♥ 110g of ground almonds
♥ 75g chilled butter, cut into small dice
♥ 175g self-raising flour
♥ 2 level teaspoons of ground cinnamon
♥ 1 level teaspoon of ground ginger
♥ 110g Demerara sugar
To serve:
Your choice of custard or favourite vanilla icecream
♥ Pre-heat the oven to 200°C (gas mark 6, 400°F)
♥Ovenproof baking dish measuring 7½ x 11 inches (19 x 28 cm) and 1¾ inches (4.5 cm) deep, or a round ovenproof baking dish with a diameter of 9½ inches (24 cm) and 1¾ inches (4.5 cm) deep.

How to make:

1) Wash and chop the rhubarb into 2.5cm pieces and place in the oven dish
2) Peel and core the apples, slice thickly add them to the rhubarb
3) Sprinkle over the sugar and spices, the fresh ginger and toss the ingredients together
4) Finally, add a dash of brandy to the fruit
5) Sift the flour and spices into the bowl of a food processor
6) Add the sugar and cubes of butter and stir before turning on the power
7) Pulse the mixture until it resembles crumbs
8) Spread the crumble mix over the surface of the fruit filling creating an even covering
9) Press the topping down on top of the fruit with the palm of your hands to make a firm and crisp crumble
10) Finally, lightly run a fork over the surface of the crumble to add an extra level of crispy goodness as it bakes
11) Put the crumble into the pre-heated oven on the centre shelf for 35-40mins until the fruit is cooked through, piping hot and bubby (if the top begins to scorch you can pop a sheet of foil over the surface to protect it).
12) Take it out of the oven, letting it rest while you dash to either whip up a batch of Bird’s custard or decant a dollop of suitable alternative to appeal to your own personal preference of crumble combinations.

Pia♥Carrot's Kinoshita Rumi presents the pudding! Maid with love!
めしあがって みんな! Coming soon! Neko Mimi Maids review

Monday, 17 May 2010

Cosplay coverage - Queen's Blade Airi at Aya 2009

Here is a shot of me in a complete cosplay project: Airi, the infamous spectral maid from the Queen’s Blade series. The picture, captured by photographer Peter Dench, summons many happy memories of both constructing and wearing costume. Airi has been a very popular choice, well received by devotees of the QB series and maid maniacs alike (as my preferences too fall into these categories it was a project that I was most enthusiastic about).

The picture appeared in a feature that ran on the 9th of May in the Sunday Telegraph and seems fuel enough to fire up a return to activity here at PorcelainePriss.
The newpaper supplement presented a small spotlight on UK cosplay culture. Many months after the press infiltrated the UK convention Ayacon (the 19th anime festival hosted at Warwick Arts Centre in August 2009) the public eye was offered a free pass and a little perspective into this creative subculture.

Peter Dench has a fantastic portfolio on his site and has a really unique eye when it comes to portraiture. Browsing his image sets gave me a great deal of pleasure and I am very to have become one of his subjects! He was great at catching a pose and his curiosity and enthusiasm made meeting him a thoroughly engaging experience.

In my life online, happy news is that I have finally bought my tripod to assist me in marvellous macro photography for figure posts… and since the collection seldom ceases to expand in great and gratuitous ways I feel more inclined to share the beautiful things from my collection with the world once more.
I’ve given the layout a little makeover and the illustration at the top, for those who are curious, is a little self portrait of the girl behind the moe. Tea and cats are two elements of my life independent of otaku culture that centre my being and invoke inner harmony. With a cat on my lap and a cup of sencha or first flush Darjeeling I am truly at peace (^_^)
I am also starting to populate Twitter with some of my many thoughts. Keep an eye out if you want to see what I’m reading, watching, cooking, eating and generally lusting after in my daily life.

Next event I will be attending is the MCM London Expo, where I will taking my latest costume, Konjiki no Yami from the fanservice extravaganza To Love Ru out for her second public soiree. At the moment I am contemplating the potential for boldly becoming Black ★ Rock Shooter in a future costume – whether I will find the bikini/hotpants combo to cold to bear, remains to be seen! Watch this space (^_~)

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Cookies & Cosplay

I had a fastidious weekend, as tends to be my habitual way of ploughing through a storm. The best cure for a dark spell, I always say is to bake! Conjuring up some chocolate cookies and giving some love to my Airi cosplay filled a Saturday with sweetness and light, some of which I thought I’d share here.
The cosplay is still in it's various pieces but the elements are coming together to form my dearest dream of playing a maid so there've been many hours of hand sewing, gathering lace and appliqué to make a monumentally moe ensemble! I can’t wait to be all finished so I may flounce about with feather dusters and scythes!
The cookies, in the shape of batfish (specially made for my family, diving enthusiasts) were a Martha Stewart creation ~ cocoa shortbread with white chocolate stripes, something I found on recipe recon this week. How do you make a bishonen like Lelouch more delicious? Have him pose with dessert!!! (Lulu quite literally became sweeter post shoot. After sitting on the plate, ended up with a white chocolate frosting on his butt…)

Friday, 5 September 2008

Yoko Sniper Version (Wave)

Porcelaine Priss makes a tardy return to reviews with a gorgeous Gainax gal from Wave/Dreamtech. Adored by collectors and cosplayers alike, Rittona Yoko has been the shiny red apple of the hobby sculptor’s eye since Tenga Toppa Gurren Lagann broke through heaven & into our hearts last year. Seeing exceptional immortalisations of this busty babe from the legendary Vispo & Polgonia, I burned to possess my own lovely Yoko-tan.What hit me harder than a blast with a positron rifle during Yoko’s debut in the first episode was just how daringly divergent her design is.
The balance of a buxom body, minimal attire and an audacious arsenal of weaponry is perhaps nothing revolutionary in anime character design but Yoko brings the booty to its highest summit.
Lavishly endowed with more flesh on show and in tow than convention commands, Yoko is a flame-licked Venus that has become the otaku’s goddess of plenty. A fearless fighter and a hot-headed honey, Yoko has an irresistibly sweet heart and an innocence that belies the bawdy bikini style she favours. When the Wave Web store posted preorders for this tasty little limited piece, I had set the sweetie square in my sights for sniping! I like Wave, their works have the integrity of expressing a character’s charm and great consistency. I have always loved them for a continued connection to a pair of my enduring fangirl followings ~ Gainax and Yoshizaki Mine.
Yoko’s portrayal in this sculpt by Shima Masaru is uncommonly kawaii. The crouching pose makes her prettily puchi, her bright and shiny eyes illuminate the little face snuggled into her muffler. This genki gunner straps herself into tight for more combat ready capers.
Her rifle comes equipped with its own adjustable ribbon strap in cherry blossom pink. Like any good fashionista this sister, Yoko has her colours coordinated adding a little feminine touch to the heavy duty shooter strapped to her chest. The purin plump body in the silky pink stockings is all strawberries and cream and totally delicious.
The sculpting shines in the sinuous curves of flame red hair that whip around her inviting the eye to trace a line down her spine to the sweet little peak of her derriere.Finishing and moulding seams are little rough around the edges, nether amounting to material illusionary excellence nor intolerably shabbiness (this is in part, due to her scale that disguises more of those finicky issues). The one major design defect is the presence of a nasty seam that spans the underside of her iconic cleavage. While this is conveniently concealed by the pink strap of the sniper rifle it somewhat mars one of her most prominent points of appeal.

All in all, Yoko is cute where it really counts and if you can seek her out, she’s a sweet little hit for Lagann lovers everywhere!