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All month long, I've been having the most entertaining time illustrating playful prompts from Kristina Yu and Jasmine Nguyen Gutierrez's #supersillysept art challenge over on IG and connecting with so many artists I'd never encountered before.

It never ceases to amaze and delight how responding to a prompt can take us in directions to which we might otherwise never have found our way. Knowing #lacelitober was just around the corner, and I wanted to take care in saving up some creative energy for that. So, I decided to take this art challenge at a slower pace. Instead of doing every prompt, I dipped my toes in sporadically whenever a prompt tugged at my creativity. I ended up playing with a lot of luminescence, and a few of these illos have an animated version, which was extra fun!

01: Musical Elephant // This endearing little fella who longs to grow up to make music just like the victrola of his dreams! 🎶

09: Magical Mountain // This prompt had me daydreaming of vibrant mountains rising from inky black waters. I felt so energized by it that I hosted a fun caption game over on IG to find the name of your mountaintop.

13: Star Carousel // On nights when sleep is illusive or dreams are restless, a few lulling rounds on the Star Carousel will bring sweet dreams and still midnight stirrings with the comfort of cloud cover, sparkling stardust, starlit trails, and soft moonglow. ✨

15: Rainbow Lighthouse // A love letter to the LGBTQIA+ community, dearest family, and beloved friends. You make this world undeniably more beautiful, and I love you so. 🌈

16: Peach Baby // When I was little, we had a book full of traditional Japanese folktales. My favorite was Momotarō, the tale of the little peach boy! I've since collected a copy filled with the stories thoughtfully compiled by Florence Sakade with magical illustrations by Yoshisuke Kurosaki- the illustrations I had as a child! When I saw this prompt in the list, I couldn't resist drawing a little portrait of him as a bit of sweet nostalgia and a nod to my Nikkei upbringing.

17: Cat Car // Hop aboard the intergalactic ✧Taxi Cat✧ for a whizzing spin through time and space! (Talk about an engine that purrs! 😉)

I conjured up this time-traveling taxi cat with a mix of inspirations- the grinning Catbus from Tonari no Totoro to the magical, purple Knight Bus from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and at the heart of it all- a playful prompt from @artofkoyu and @jazgtzdesign's Super Silly September art challenge. My younger sibling Britt, says it also reminds them of Gengar from Pokemon, and I can totally see that, too!

20: Affirmation Cake // It can be tricky to hold onto hope when the world feels out of control. When I feel bleakness seeping in, I turn to two of my favorite Galadriel quotes from my beloved Lord of the Rings:

"Even the smallest person can change the course of the future."

"I give you the light of Eärendil, our most beloved star. May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out."

Each and every spark can build toward a collective aim, turning hope into change. When we can't do it on our own, we can band together, demand the improbable, and create beauty and justice in this world. 🤍

22: Bunny Heaven // Bun-buns, carrots, cloud-fluffs!

24: Galaxy Tea // What if there were spinning teapot planets with delicious brews bubbling up within their core? 🤩

What tea feels like home to you, friends? For me, it's a beautifully bitter Genmaicha (green tea mixed with roasted popped brown rice). Oishiiiiii. 😛

30: Whipped Cream Castle // I’ve had the BEST time exploring @artofkoyu & @jazgtzdesign’s playful prompts this month, and simply had to do one last piece for September’s end! 🧁 3 creamy questions for you! 1) What’s your favorite dessert for adding on a dollop of whipped cream? I enjoy it most on hot cocoa, a bowl of chopped strawberries, or jello! 2) Do you watch the Great British Baking Show?! 3) Have you ever had vegan rice milk whipped cream or CocoWhip? They're amaaaaazing! 🥥

. . .

Which is your favorite, friends? I'm thinking of turning some of them into cards, postcards, or mini art prints. Which ones would you most like to see?

♡ Kimberly Kuniko

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Words, Art + Photography by

© Kimberly 國子Taylor-Pestell


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Welcome to the personal blog of of Kimberly Kuniko, a Nikkei American illustrator, collage artist, poet, and host of cozy, virtual guided creative retreats with a new theme each month.

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