Author Archives: Agro

Even Sakura Needs Time to Bloom

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Japan is famous for its beautiful Sakura in spring. However, not many know that each Sakura tree must fight a hard battle before it can bloom. I recently moved near Tama River in Tokyo and experienced it firsthand.

Many people say that the Sakura along Tama River is very beautiful. Photography is my hobby so I jotted down the forecasted bloom date which is April 1st.

Sadly, it continued to rain everyday even though Sakura can only bloom in warm weather. When April started, the weather was still cold and the Sakura trees were still withered so I had to cancel my plans to take pictures with my friend Narumi.

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For the next few days I rode my bicycle to the riverbed everyday to see how the bloom progressed. First the buds started to appear, but the petals were still shy to show their slight pinkish color. Around the trees green grass started to grow lush and other flowers bloomed, so the withered Sakura looked out of place and made the scenery unsightly.

When some of the Sakura flowers finally started to appear, rain poured again followed by strong winds the next day. I was worried that the flowers will scatter before its prime time, but even though the branches were swayed violently by the winds, the Sakura trees stayed firmly on the ground.

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In the end the wind subdued, and even though it was late by a week the Sakura bloomed magnificently. I went there with Narumi, and for me it was the most beautiful Sakura I had ever seen in my life.

Like how the Sakura blooms, everything in life needs time. Sometimes people only see the final result and don’t realize the hard struggle needed to achieve it.

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Perhaps you are sick and must fight everyday just to survive. Or perhaps you are studying hard to achieve your dreams. You might be someone dieting and going to the gym everyday to get a healthier body. Or you might be someone whose business failed and must start from zero. Whatever your battle is, don’t give up and keep on fighting. Believe that like the Sakura near my house, there will be a time when you will fully bloom.

About the Author: Agro Rachmatullah is a software engineer with photography hobby. His works can be followed in Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
About the model: Narumi Ishikawa is a university student, artist, and environmentalist.

Meibi Studio Released iOS Game “Angel Puzzle”

Angel Puzzle on iOS

Meibi Studio in Japan collaborated with 40 cute Japanese models to create an iOS game Angel Puzzle. In this game you can play 11 types of puzzle totaling 60 levels that train your wit and hand reflexes.

Game Angel Puzzle

In Angel Puzzle, you as the protagonist found an ancient tomb in a library. It turns out that the book holds secret for angels that used to roam the Earth. By solving the puzzles, you can collect photos of those angels and reveal the mystery surrounding their disappearance from this Earth.

The early levels serve as a warmup and you will meet well known puzzles like jigsaw puzzles. However as the difficulty increases you will encounter many new and challenging puzzles. In one type of the puzzle, you have to connect all the same shapes from the starting point to the endpoint. It sounds simple enough, but if you miscalculate you will find that there are some shapes left behind and you have to think of another solution that works.

Game Angel Puzzle

A unique feature of this game is the ability to vote for your favorite models. Voting points can be obtained by finishing certain levels and the model ranks can be viewed real time. Meibi Studio plans to release extra content or new games with their most voted models.

The Android version will also be released soon. In the meantime, if you have an iPhone you can download the game here.

Eri Kashima – Sanage Onsen Photoshoot

Eri Kashima at Sanage Onsen

Some time ago we had a photoshoot at Sanage Onsen (猿投温泉), Aichi with Eri Kashima. The place is famous for its hot springs, but because there are Japanese traditional gardens and quite a big lake it’s also a great place for doing portrait photoshoot.

Sanage Onsen is located at Toyota city, not so far from Nagoya. There is a free bus which provides easy access to the place.

Eri Kashima at Sanage Onsen

Eri Kashima at Sanage Onsen

When you arrive at the location, there is a big map showing the area. Don’t forget to go to the waterfall and climb a bit to reach the lake.

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Location Info

Name: Sanage Onsen

Address: 21 Umamichi-dori, Kano-cho, Toyota-shi, Aichi, Japan 470-0364

How to get there: If you’re from the Nagoya area, first go to Josui station (Meitetsu Toyota Line) or Fujigaoka Station (Higashiyama Line), whichever the nearest is. From there there is a free bus to Sanage Onsen. Just ask the station’s staff for the place of the bus stop (be sure to ask specifically for the bus stop for Sanage Onsen).

Bus departing from Josui station: 9:45, 11:45, 14:45, 16:45

Last bus going back to Josui station: 19:20

Bus departing from Fujigaoka station: 9:00, 11:00, 14:50

Last bus going back to Fujigaoka station: 18:00

Schedules might change, so check http://www.sanageonsen.jp/timetable/

Eri Kashima at Sanage Onsen

Japanese Models in Real Life vs Painting Part 2

Meibi Project held a collaborative photo-painting exhibition in Yamate Cafe Nagoya, and we got a total of 326 submissions from many countries! The exhibition titled “E ni Narimasu” is held in 2 stages, with the first one from March 14-March 30 2015 and the second one from March 31-April 11 2015.

We have written about the 11 artworks from the first stage. Now let’s see the 12 artworks for the second stage!

Hiroko Tsukamoto by Yossy Firstia

Hiroko Tsukamoto by Yossy Firstia

Rina Matsuo by Teddy Karas Onyszkow

Rina Matsuo by Teddy Karas Onyszkow

Maria Sasaki by Rhusman

Maria Sasaki by Rhusman

Eri Kashima by Regiana Jubi

Eri Kashima by Regiana Jubi

Yuki Yoneyama by R. Herningtyas

Yuki Yoneyama by R. Herningtyas

Misa Kawai by Peter Donka

Misa Kawai by Peter Donka

Airi Tanaka & Miki Kando by Made Yani Anggarawati

Airi Tanaka & Miki Kando by Made Yani Anggarawati

Takara Okura by Kunna Aulia

Takara Okura by Kunna Aulia

Yuriko Wada by Illés Lilla

Yuriko Wada by Illés Lilla

Yuuka Nakano by Ikure

Yuuka Nakano by Ikure

Miki Kando by Betty Tio

Miki Kando by Betty Tio

Sanae Kume by Berlian Soong

Sanae Kume by Berlian Soong

Congratulations for those chosen for the second stage, and thanks for everyone for participating! For those not yet lucky this time, follow us on social medias and wait for the next chance!

11 Japanese Models in Real Life vs Painting on Exhibition

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Yua-chan (@0621Yua) helping to prepare the exhibition

Meibi Project is now holding a collaborative photo-painting exhibition in Nagoya, Japan from 14 March to 11 April 2015. The photos are the portrait works of the Indonesian photographer and Meibi Project’s founder Agro Rachmatullah, whose aim is to introduce more about the personalities, dreams, and achievements of Japanese women through the medium of art. The paintings are sent by various collaborating artists from outside Japan.

Since starting Meibi Project in 2011, we received many fanarts from around the world. We are really happy that our portraits inspire people to create more art, so this time we want to return the favor by giving artists all around the world the chance to exhibit their drawings in Japan. For the first stage of this exhibition we received 68 submissions with various styles ranging from anime to the Japanese traditional ukiyo-e. If you like to draw, you can still participate for the second part of the exhibition by sending your art here!

Here are the 11 paintings that were selected for the first part:

Yuki Yoneyama by Helmi Helmawan

Yuki Yoneyama by Helmi Helmawan

Maria Sasaki by Imanuel Vicky Christian

Maria Sasaki (@majuniorsan) by Imanuel Vicky Christian

Mayu Fukushige by Sena Kaito

Mayu Fukushige by Sena Kaito

Mizuki Nakano by Sofia Halim

Mizuki Nakano by Sofia Halim

Kanae Suzuki by Shelly Ramadhani

Kanae Suzuki (@kanacin3) by Shelly Ramadhani

Yua Agata by Steven Brahma

Yua Agata (@0621Yua) by Steven Brahma

Hiroko Tsukamoto by Sunlita Citra

Hiroko Tsukamoto by Sunlita Citra

Dinia Ridanti by windy winsoy

Dinia Ridanti (@anchiciblong) by windy winsoy

Natsumi Hirose by yaken

Natsumi Hirose by yaken

Ai Tobo by Yuliana Ekasinta

Ai Tobo (@axfs2) by Yuliana Ekasinta

Rina Koike by Yudea Marcha

Rina Koike (@15Riqa) by Yudea Marcha

Each photographer interprets the same scene and object differently by using a different focal length, composition, and camera settings. It’s really interesting to see how the resulting photo gets reinterpreted differently by various artists through their drawings.

If you want your painting to be exhibited in Japan, you can still submit for the second part here! We will post a more thorough coverage of the event at a later time. For those who didn’t get selected this time, we will post the images on our Facebook and Twitter page. Once again, congratulations for all who passed!

Meibi Photography Exhibition “E ni Narimasu??”
Place: Yamate Cafe, 1-17-1 Yamate-dori, Showa-ku, Nagoya, Japan
Date: March 14-April 11 2015 (except Sunday)
Time: 11:00-16:00

Send Your Drawing and Have it Exhibited at Japan!

Pameran Meibi Project

If you like drawing, now is the chance to participate in our Japan exhibition!

[Note: The result of the first part is here. You can still submit for the second part.]

Meibi Project will have a collaborative exhibition of photo and drawing in Nagoya from March 14 to April 11 2015. The photos are of Meibi Project’s models, and for the drawing we are now accepting submissions from artists and hobbyists all around the world! If you want to collaborate, here’s what you have to do:

  1. Visit Meibi Project’s Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and choose a photo that you want to draw.
  2. The art media, method, and style is free. For example it can be a digital painting, crayon on paper, or even oil on canvas.
  3. Send the finished work to art@meibiproject.com with 1600 pixels on the longest side (e.g., 1600×900) in JPG format. We will select the best drawings.
  4. If your drawing is selected to be exhibited, we will ask for a high-resolution file. Therefore make sure that your original file has a resolution of at least 4500 pixels on the longest side (e.g., 4500×2530). If you want the original physical artwork (e.g., the canvas) to be exhibited, you can send the artwork to Japan but make sure that the size is at most 364×257 mm (14.3×10.1 inch).
  5. The deadline for the first period is March 11 (will be exhibited March 14-March 30). The deadline for the second period is March 22 (will be exhibited March 31-April 11).

Pameran Meibi Project

Here are the exhibition’s details:

Meibi Photography Exhibition “E ni Narimasu”
Place: Yamate Cafe, 1-17-1 Yamate-dori, Showa-ku, Nagoya, Japan
Date: March 14-April 11 2015 (except Sunday)
Time: 11:00-16:00

Meibi Project is an art project of the Indonesian photographer Agro Rachmatullah. In Japan where gravure and idol photos are everywhere and women are judged mostly by their looks on those media, this project aims to introduce more about the personalities, dreams, and achievements of Japanese women through the medium of art. Meibi Project has collaborated with more than 50 models to create various artworks especially photography.

Pameran Meibi Project

The drawings that are accepted for this exhibition might also be displayed at a bigger exhibition planned in Tokyo at the end of this year. So don’t waste this once in a lifetime chance to send your artwork to Japan, and please share this news to your other friends!

Happy New Year! – 21st Century Collaboration

2013 has been a great year! So many new girls joined our project and we did photoshoots at many amazing places. Our fans at various social medias also reached 16,000 people. Therefore, what better way to celebrate it than to make a little flashback video?

However having just a slideshow would certainly be boring, so we collaborated with our models to give you a special new year message! Please check it out:

One big problem in the production of the video is that the production team is now not in Japan. However, we believe that in this case the message is more important than the technical quality of the video, so we decided to film it using each of the model’s smartphone or digital camera! Besides, we think that it will give a sense of closeness not possible to convey using a DSLR for example.

It’s really great that in this age we can collaborate without being constrained by geographical borders. So really, eventually it all comes down to your determination to make a piece of work.

Here are the messages we want to convey in this video:

  • Gratitude and international friendship: We want to thank our supporters from all around for being with us last year.
  • Getting to know the models: The models are just like us, they go to school, they graduate, and then be a working model of the society. What unites us together is our passion to create and enjoy beautiful works of art.
  • Hope: Every year must have its ups and downs, but new year gives us a chance to rethink positively about our future and potential.

So, we hope that you enjoyed the video and have a great year ahead!