The struggle is real for kimono-clad, minimalist characters in pseudonymous Japanese artist Zenjidou Yamada's anachronistic woodblock print-style illustrations. Yamada taught himself ukiyo-e with no professional schooling and has now prolifically catalogued the ephemeral sensations of global culture. Edo-era men and women act out each anachronistic concept, from train fatigue and awkward invasions of personal space to fashion faux pas and the pleasure of instant noodles. Yamada tells Creators he started the project after attempting to paint his favorite musician in the ukiyo-e aesthetic. He was fascinated by how the guitar and drums came out, and decided to blend more modern elements into his ukiyo-e paintings.
Each drawing is captioned exclusively in Japanese calligraphy, so we asked Yamada to translate a few of the pieces.
Johnny Strategy of Spoon & Tamago also translated several of Yamada's captions.
Some of Yamada's illustrations don't require any translation.
See more of Zenjidou Yamada's work on his website.