I have a list of places I'd love to visit before I die. Well, before I get too old I guess; there's no point in going someplace if you can't have a little fun there, right? Oh, I've done Cancun, so that's off the list. Brazil looks like a lot of fun. I'm sure I need to see Australia too. Europe, of course...um, specifically Greece and Ireland. Spain too I guess. First though, I've always wanted to visit Japan.
Oh, there's that whole rich history thing. Geishas, smoky temples, samurais and weird haunted forests... I've GOT to see that. Of course, there's the cities too. Every time I see a picture of someplace like Tokyo it just looks so cool. All the lights, all that neon, it's like something out of science fiction. There's so much of the new mixed with the old. It's weird and beautiful, totally exotic but with something just soooo familiar. Zen Buddhists compete on bizarre game shows. Robots are replacing fashion models and learning to read minds. Where else IS any of this? Nowhere. Sure it's been imported in diluted form over to the West. We copy the game shows, Gwen Stefani carts over her Harajuku Girls (of course, I LOVE Gwen, don't get me wrong!), we remake their movies into something less.
Whatever. It's a strange place, with a whole history of discipline and regiment but still at the same time a free craziness that's just colorful and full of life. Maybe it comes from seeing the end of the world and coming through it. I don't know.
Anyway, it's gorgeous, and Japanese art and culture has been Yukio Ida of Gauze's inspiration since he first set up shop in SL as Illuminati Designs. His latest skin releases are gorgeous Ganguro skins inspired by one of the more beautifully weird subcultures in Japan. Manba, Banba and Ganguro are the first in a total revamp Yuki's been doing on his skin line, and absolutely I love the choices here. The makeups are perfectly ganguro and all those little bits like anatomy and shading are VERY well done on these hand drawn skins. I love these to pieces!