Streamer of the Month: @JapanesePrintmaking Is the Modern ‘Joy of Painting’ We Need Right Now

     July 19, 2020


More people than ever before are broadcasting their gameplay, showing off their hobbies, and polishing their conversation skills by interacting with millions of people from all over the world. But with so many streamers, gamers, and content creators sharing their stories on the Internet, it starts to feel a little overwhelming. Where do you start? Who do you follow? Who’s doing something unique, interesting, and meaningful on all of the many streaming platforms?

That’s where Collider’s Streamer of the Month comes in! In this new series, we aim to highlight streamers from all walks of life and all over the world in order to bring your attention to folks you might otherwise have missed. Up-and-coming gamers, innovators, and trailblazers will be featured here, but let us know if there’s someone out there we should be watching. Who knows, you might just see them featured here in the future!

Our first “Streamer of the Month” was @DeejayKnight, a Twitch partner and stage/show host with a passion for all things S.T.E.A.M. and a positive approach to life. The spirit of that Twitch spotlight continues with this month’s descriptive yet slightly less personal name, @JapanesePrintmaking. This channel, which streams from Tokyo, Japan as you might have guessed, delivers the content promised in its title, but much like The Joy of Painting became famous for its fuzzy-haired artist Bob Ross, so too is @JapanesePrintmaking gaining popularity thanks to its charismatic host, Dave Bull.

As the Twitch channel’s info section states, “Woodblock printmaker Dave Bull has been living in Tokyo since the mid 1980s, making Japanese prints with traditional techniques. In recent years, his workshop has become well-known for their Ukiyoe Heroes prints produced in collaboration with illustrator Jed Henry.”

But there’s a lot more to find in each and every stream. Bull is a modern-day Bob Ross, delivering decades’ worth of knowledge and experience accumulated from his countless hours dedicated to woodblock printmaking. More than an online art class, which is worth the price of admission (which is free by the way), Bull shares particular details about the traditional woodblock printmaking process that are as interesting as they are subtle, accompanied by anecdotes from notable names, moments, locations, innovations, and more from the printmaking industry’s long history.

There’s also an ASMR component to @JapanesePrintmaking — much like The Joy of Painting — in which you can let yourself get lost in Bull’s quiet voice, the background sounds of his shop, inside and out (which you can also see thanks to a secondary camera on the street outside), the occasional unboxing / unwrapping of new prints and materials, the clockwork caws of the neighborhood crows, and the slow chiseling and chipping away at the woodblocks themselves. It’s a wonderfully calm way to de-stress in our modern world and learn a little something in the process. You might even find a whole new world of art to decorate your walls!

If you’re interested in checking out @JapanesePrintmaking, either as an artform or an ASMR-like escape, you can find the channel streaming under Twitch’s Maker’s & Crafting category. Look for Bull to go live Monday/Thursday/Saturday, at 8:00 am Tokyo time for around 90 minutes. (US west coast: 4:00 pm previous day / US east coast: 7:00 pm previous day / Britain: 0:00 / Australia east coast: 9:00 am). If you want to support the channel and their artwork, you can do so via Twitch or head over to their Patreon page for more options.

If you miss the live shows, no worries, you can always watch the latest VOD here, or follow along at their YouTube page for more. You can find even more at their official Facebook page and a dedicated fan page here. @JapanesePrintmaking is a fantastic example of the wide variety of streamers reaching out to audiences out there today, and it’s our honor to make them July 2020’s Streamer of the Month.

If you have a streamer that you want to spotlight in the future, be sure to let us know!

Dave Trumbore is Collider’s Senior Editor overseeing Games, Animation, and all those weird Saturday-morning cartoons no one else remembers. Test his trivia IQ on Twitter @DrClawMD