Tomoko Ichikawa is a Japanese artist and long-time friend of Perfect Potion. Sal and Tomoko met in 2008, when Sal opened his first ever Perfect Potion store in Kyoto, Japan.
Since then, Tomoko and Perfect Potion’s relationship has flourished, and Tomoko’s charming artworks have featured on our Peace Perfumes, our Five Element Essential Oil Kit, 2017 Gift Packs and she also painted the stunning cover of Sal’s Aromatree book. Now, her emotionally evocative piece 'Left Tear' is featured with our Hug Time blend for our February campaign.
In this interview, we meet the artist behind this beautiful artwork. To see more of her wonderful illustrations, visit her website here: https://www.ichikawatomoko.com/
Image left: Left Tear Image right: Aromatree
PP: Did you always dream of becoming an artist? What were your childhood dreams?
Tomoko: My childhood dream was painter or cowgirl.
PP: What are your main sources of inspiration as an artist?
Tomoko: My inspiration comes from some books I read in childhood.
PP: Do you have recurring themes in your artwork, and why are they so special to you?
Tomoko: My theme is “water,” because water appears under various forms: ice, steam, snow…it’s the work of God. The mysterious image captures my heart. Another theme is “home.” That it is the shape of the heart to me. I’ve been keeping my peace of my mind by painting the home.
PP: Your art, Left Tear is being featured for Perfect Potion’s Hug Time blend. Could you please tell us the story behind this artwork?
Tomoko: I drew this picture when my father had been dead for 4 years. I wanted him to hug me when I was lonely. So, I was cuddled by my tear (sorrow) in my picture. I was saved by my picture.
PP: Do you have a special ritual to help your imagination? Could you please describe your artistic process?
Tomoko: If I feel like I’m stuck drawing, I always cook in the kitchen. The vegetables take various forms and taste. I am amazed at the beauty. This helps me to become able to draw, again.
PP: Your beautiful artworks have featured in Perfect Potion in a number of ways: from the stunning Aromatree; to the Peace Perfume and Five Elements gift packs; to this heart-warming Hug Time poster. How did your relationship with Perfect Potion and Sal begin?
Tomoko: I held my exhibition in the Fumitsubaki building, which contains Perfect Potion Kyoto, about 10 years ago. Sal-san found my pictures and bought some pictures.
PP: What was your reaction when you first smelt the Hug Time blend, and how does it make you feel?
Tomoko: How colourful! I feel like I’m in a field of flowers.
PP: Do you have a favourite Perfect Potion product? Why do you love it?
Tomoko: “Shinrin-yoku Oil Kit.” I use it to take me to the forest, so I can always draw in the forest.