Ebijiro, The Traveling Shrimp Sushi: A Photo Project

Ever wonder what an ebi (shrimp) sushi would do if it had the opportunity to travel a bit? Wonder no more! Ebijiro is here to demonstrate. On a brief trip to Belgium and Amsterdam I photographed this sushi in different locations. A friend described this photo project as “somewhere between hilarious and freakingly odd.” I was elated because, yep, that’s pretty much the tone I strive for. You can see the original posts at my instagram or searching for #ebijiro or #shrimpstagram.

Of course, it’s not a real shrimp. That would be smelly. It’s one of those extremely realistic plastic food models for which Japan is famous.

I love this intersection between travel and toy photography. From the moment I saw the Travelocity gnome photos and the gnome postcards from the movie, Amelie, I felt this… freakingly odd connection. I actually started doing this kind of photography a few years ago with a clay star I call Estello. I got a few strange looks (okay, many strange looks) but I also met a lot of other people doing the same thing. The different objects people choose for their avatar reveals a lot about the person. Mostly people use stuffed animals.

I’ve been doing Estello for a while. He even has his own blog, Estello Project (though it’s in desperate need of an update). I love how the moldable oil-clay can interact with the environment, but that movement comes with a price. It’s very messy. Dirt gets in the clay, clay gest on fingers, sets and cameras. So Estello is currently in a period of development as I search for a material that isn’t so difficult to work with.  On this trip I was a bit disappointed that I’d be doing only “regular photography” until I saw this shrimp sushi at the airport and thought, why not?

What I enjoy beside the humor of photographing a shrimp all over Europe, is the challenge of finding new ways to look at places. I’m thinking about light and perspective in a new way. Ebijiro, and this photography give me a different way to engage with the places I travel. It’s another tool in my photographic thinking kit.

Limericks: The Sushi Cycle

I made this ika last year. It is I my writing muse.
I made this ika last year. It is  my writing muse.

Day 2 of Writing 201 is limericks. Most of the limericks I find funny are dirty and usually rhyme with “Nantucket” but I try to keep it clean online.

Thinking of what to write, somehow my sushi eating experience came to mind. I like the idea of a cycle of limericks that go from sushi newbie to sushi pro. These limericks are about my journey towards liking something.

It’s a first draft which I might or might not polish up later. It’s a bit fictional since I still don’t like aka-gai and ika.

Sushi Newbie
My first aka-gai in a shop
Was a large sushi, not a fine chop.
Though I chewed and I chewed
The fish was never consumed.
Lucky clean-up required no mop.

Sushi Intermediate
My first ika-sushi in years
Required I drink copious beers.
To eat tuna and negi
You don’t have to beg me
But raw ika just leaves me in tears.

Sushi Pro
Maguro, scallops and clams
Without wasabi are bland
I love the green tea
Enough ginger for three
And the best shoyu in all of Japan.

Aka-gai=shellfish
Ika= squid
Maguro=tuna
Shoyu=soy sauce

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