Frequently Asked Questions

When will the store open? When are the prints, painted jeans and T-shirts coming?

Soon! We are working on it!

Do you take monster requests?

Yes we do! All your requests and suggestions for new monsters will be taken very, very seriously by the artist. Send in e-mail from here!

I want to know more about Japanese monsters.

If you read Japanese, there are quite a few resources out there. Japan is enjoying a sudden surge in the popularity of monsters recently so the last five years have produced a wealth of material. Works from the Edo period and earlier are getting re-published, for example. A simple search at your favorite online Japanese bookstore for words like youkai, obake or Kaiju should produce a lot of hits.

Couple of suggestions:

Gazu Hyakki Yakou ISBN 4336033862 or ISBN 4044051011

Wonderful images from the 18th century monster master, Toriyama Sekien. The second ISBN number is for the much smaller (and therefore inexpensive) pocket version.

Hokusai Youkai Hyakkei ISBN 4336046360

Where else can you see most of the monsterous figures Katsushika Hokusai drew in his lifetime? Includes both woodblock prints and hand drawn work.

Please also see our Monster Links page.

How does the artist draw these pictures? Trace over photos?

Sometimes, but not much. They are painted digitally, line by line, color patch by color patch. Photos are used more often like sketches, useful to remember what something looked like. Artists should not let reality interfere with their idea of fun, so faithful reproduction of a photo is not something that we are interested in. We are talking about monsters, after all.

© 2005 Mieko Mochizuki Swartz. All rights reserved.