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   The San Diego Museum of Art Artists Guild

Hajime (Haj-Mae) Ohno

Oil, and mixed media (mostly b&w and colored pencils)


Member profile details

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First name
Hajime (Haj-Mae)
Last name
Oil, and mixed media (mostly b&w and colored pencils)
Artists Statement
I find inspiration from a variety of different artists such as Alphonse Mucha, Hiroshige (Ukiyo-e artist), Caravaggio, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, John Singer Sargent, Anders Zorn, and John William Waterhouse.

While working on a new project, I hope to discover something new in the process, technically or thematically. When it happens, I try to incorporate that new discovery into that artwork. It does not happen often, but when it happens, it gives me extra fun and motivation.

One important preparatory ritual for me is mixing oil paints to create various grays and browns of different values. I do this process in the morning while listening to long-lasting albums such as Blonde on Blonde by Bob Dylan.
I was born into a rice farming family in a small town in Hokkaido, the northernmost island of Japan. When I was seven, our family quit farming and moved to Sapporo, Hokkaido’s capital and largest city.

After living in Tokyo for seven years, I moved to the United States in the early 1980s, and studied book illustration and graphic art at a private art school in Franklin, Tennessee. The school also taught me human anatomy and perspective drawing, and how to create illustrations in the tradition of Howard Pyle, N. C. Wyeth, and Norman Rockwell.

In 1994, I moved back to Sapporo, Japan, and started a career as a translator/interpreter, temporarily putting a stop to art. Around 2015, then living in San Marcos, California, I resumed oil painting. Since then, I have created a more than 50 animal portraits in oil or mixed media drawing.

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