Gyotaku (Japanese 魚拓, from gyo “fish” + taku “rubbing”) is a traditional form of Japanese fish printing, dating from the mid-19th century, a form of nature printing used by fishermen to record their catches. Gyotaku is also practiced as a form of art.
Gyotaku is a simple art created by pressing rice paper onto a fish. The artist, Jeremy Willson, uses the direct method in creating his gyotaku prints. By painting the fish with non-toxic acrylic paint and then applying the paper to the fish this provides an exact replica taken straight from the specimen. Jeremy has had the opportunity to create numerous dramatic prints including au (marlin), ahi (yellowfin tuna), mahi mahi (dolphinfish), ono (wahoo), ulua (giant trevally), uku (grey snapper), onaga (red snapper), opakapaka (pink snapper), shutome (swordfish), numerous sharks and colorful reef species.
Jeremy has adopted a minimalistic approach to fish-printing using no post processing enhancement techniques. The images are never touched-up following the removal of the print from the fish. This Hawaii-style technique provides you with an accurate “what-you-see-is-what-you-get” print.
A wide variety of original art and reproductions are available and Jeremy can also provide custom gyotaku services for Hawaii’s fishing community. Please contact Jeremy for more information if you wish to have your own catch immortalized through gyotaku.