Saturday, 30 October 2010

Kofuu-Senju Publications shooting for new Irezumi book "Dentobori"

Today we spent the whole day shooting for our upcoming book on hand tattooing Irezumi master Nakamura Toshikazu from Fukuoka, Japan. After setting up our lights and other equipment the day flew by in a blur of amazing traditional Japanese tattoo pieces, all of which will form the visual outline for a book we feel will become a classic.

Weather in Fukuoka proved a shift from the rainy and windy Yokohama we arrived in, all due to a shift in direction of the approching cyclone we feared was going to affect our visit to this southern island of Japan.

We remind any buyers of "Ryushin" that no books will be shipped until our return to europe in the end of the upcoming week.

Sunday, 24 October 2010

For a while.

Tomorrow is packing day.
Hustling frantically to get the camera gear stowed away and trying not to forget to bring fresh underwear. Toothbrush, earplugs and maybe a good book. Always confusing.....packing up for a trip to Japan.

This past month has been thrilling, to say the least. It's not everyday that people publish books they only dreamed about publishing a few years back. Seemingly out of nowhere we pulled "Ryushin" (with a great deal of help adn suport from Horiyoshi III), and it's beyond rewarding to hold a work you yourselves created in trembling hands. What cannot be achieved after this?

We have so many ideas, so many leads, and so little time. If we could have our way we would fill up bookshelves in this instant. before that, of course, always comes hard and dilligent work.

Seems like ages since I lifted the camera spiritually to capture the illusive ghosts and demons of reality. Now it beckons me for attention. "Use me", it whispers from its tucked away existance in the black camera bag beside the desk where the double screens display the first outlines of the pages for "Kokoro". There's no telling where we will end up this time, friends. All I am sure of, is that the universe will gently place us where we need to be.

We will try to find time and opportunity to update this blog when on our travels in Japan, but sometimes internet connections are few and far inbetween. But rely on at least something from us in the bext two weeks.

Until then.


(photograph of Horiysohi III's work by Alex Reinke, Yokohama, Japan 2010)

Friday, 22 October 2010

On Photography (Irezumi)

The beauty lies within the loss of the moment


(photograph of Maiko in Gion, Kyoto, Japan created by Matti Sedholm/Senju)

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Six Days

Woke up to the realization that winter is rapidly approaching up here in the north. Seven degrees minus celsius this morning. Everything changes. Summer tires on the car makes driving to the office a bit more exiting than I would like it to be. Thank heavens I am going to Japan next week.

Only a few days left to order "Ryushin" before we go to Japan. Shipping will end on the 25th and resume on the 6th of November.

Those pre-orders of "ryushin" that are not already payed are now regarded as void, and those copies will be added as available. We are very pleased with the interest our book has gained, and will continue sending out books as fast as we possibly can.

(photograph from the Yokohama Tattoo Museum created by Alex Reinke, autumn 2009)

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Mere seven days

In a week we'll be landing in Japan in order to attempt a conclusion in gathering material for our upcoming book "Kokoro". Since the project was first initiated it has taken its turns, metamorphosing and evolving. To try to paint this portrait of Horiyoshi III has proved to be a task of catching a soul, a ghost.

At first there were only images and silent whispers. They later turned into the urge for words. An urge to tell something beyond what has already been said. At the present we are staring a ghost in the face, not really shure how to react or what to say. But there's a strong sense of being grateful for the experience and the opportunity to express. As the last and feverishly hectic months of producing this book will commence short upon our homecoming, I am sure we'll see more colors in the scales of the dragon.

"kokoro" will not be a lot of things.
That we know.
It will not be a biography in the traditional sense of the word. Neither a book of tattoos solely. We have felt that there is more to this than the visulaity of it all, and we're trying to find out what that "more" is.
Of course the book will contain lots of images of Irezumi, along with all the other things that we have picked up on the way, but in order for the traditional Japanese tattoo to come into existence, there has to be "Kokoro", the soul, the heart of things. Maybe Horiyoshi III can tell us what that is. And show us.

While waiting for the release of this book, please explore Horiyoshi III's work in our newly released book "Ryushin". A work that hopefully has pointed out the direction in which we are heading.

(photograph of Horiyoshi III's Irezumi work by Matti Sedholm, Yokohama, Japan 2009)

Sunday, 17 October 2010


In between 25/10 and 7/11 we will be on the field (Japan) working on our upcoming bookprojects, so there will be a lull in the shipping activities for "Ryushin". If you want to order this limited edition book, and make sure we can ship it before we go, please place your order no later than 24/10. Usually books go out within twentyfour hours, and sometimes fortyeight, so last minute orders can be taken care of. You can order it on the right hand top of this blog.

Plans are laid and gear is being packed for the photographing of "Nakamura's World". We look forward to present this traditional Japanese tattoists take on things, and it wouldn't be surprising if some images end up on this blog before the actual book is printed and shipped.

We will try to update the blog as much as possible when we are in Japan, so make sure to check in once in a while.

During the last month we have been totally immersed in the selling and shipping of copies of "Ryushin" and we are truly grateful for the outstanding reception it has gotten, both inside and outside of the tattoo community. Thanks!

Monday, 11 October 2010

Important on the pricing of "Ryushin".

Due to "currency wars" and ongoing "twists" in the worlds economy at the moment we have decided to set the price of "Ryushin" in Euro (€) instead of the Swedish krona. At the moment the Swedish currency is one of the strongest, which makes our books more and more expensive for buyers worldwide with each day that passes. The Euro is more balanced against the dollar and in the future we will set our prices in abovementioned currency.

The price will now be 199 € plus 35 € for packing and shipping.

This of course means that some indivudals that has already bought the book through our blog has in reality payed a higher price. For these buyers there will be a 15% discount on the next book they choose to purchase.
If anyone wants to discuss this matter with us, please send us a mail at

(photograph from Konchi-in, Kyoto, Japan by Matti Sedholm 2008)

Thursday, 7 October 2010


Another day of grey, steel-cold, bitter October. September beauty left without saying goodbye properly. I miss her. Another morning spent in the storage room packing books and writing invoices. Am I happy? I have no complaints.

(photograph from Gion, Kyoto, Japan by Matti Sedholm 2008)

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Past Week/New Ways

Strange how fast a week can pass you by. Since the copies of "Ryushin" arrived there has been little time for anything else than packing and shipping. Luckily enough we set it up beforehand, so that boxes, packing materials etc, was ready.
Being a tattooer and photographer, it's not a working day I'm used to, but I welcome the change with open arms.

To become stagnant is the worst enemy of creativity, and creativity hides everywhere in life. If you try to perform the task at hand the best you can, pretty soon it all becomes equally rewarding. Strange how packing books and riding to the post office can trigger new outlooks on the backgrounds for my Irezumi, or point me towards new subject matter in photography.

This past week Kofuu-Senju Publications have had to butt heads with PayPal several time. As we have chosen this payment option, because of its reputed easy-to-handleness, we have found it not so easy at all.
For instance, when we send out our money requests to buyers of "Ryushin", it comes out in swedish only. Suddenly the inbox was full of confused buyers not being able to make out what it said. I called PayPal, and they simply said that this is how it works. You get assigned the language of your native country when signing up, and there's nothing that can be done about it.
This has cost me many hours huddled over the keyboard at the office. Frustrating. What was supposed to be easy became a minefield of correspondance.

Finally, a buyer came up with a simple solution! Instead of us asking the buyer for the money, they can simply pay send us the money from their own PayPal account. Simple as that! Everyone can now do it in their own preffered language. Thanks, Geoff!

We're now counting down to our next visit to Japan. We're going to finalize the material for our upcoming photo book on Horiyoshi III, "Kokoro", as well as photograph and collect the material for our upcoming book on Japanese traditional tattooist Nakamura Toshikazu. "Nakamura's World" (working title so far), is scheduled for next autumn. Probably we'll be negotiating with another exellent Horishi, about an upcoming book project on him as well.
Busy,busy, busy........
But fun!

If anyone that has pre-ordered "Rysushin" ahs not recieved their money request from us, or if any other problem regarding this is occuring, please let us know.
make sure to check your spam folder, just in case some important update on Your order has ended up there.

Now its back to packing and shipping.


(photograph of Nakamura Toshikazu by Alex Reinke, Fukuoka, Japan 2009)