Monday, February 27, 2012

T is for Tengu

This week's entry for AlphaBeasts! is Tengu, a red-faced, long-nosed goblin that roams the world making mischief & punishing the vain. You may have seen masks of this character in Japanese restaurants.

Acrylic on advertisement for Post Bran Flakes, scanned from Delineator magazine, December 1930, ~ 6"x9"

What a lovely, supportive headline, eh? And the copy is even more so:
"You may as well be frank with yourself-- let the least shadow of fatigue dim your facial freshness, let the tiniest trace of tiredness write its hairline autograph at the corners of your eyes or mouth-- and-- "She looks positively washed out, poor dear!" they will say-- "She's one of my best friends and I wouldn't have her hear me say it for worlds, but I'm afraid, so afraid, she's beginning to lose her looks."

Of course, bran flakes will reverse that pesky aging process! Ah, advertising. I sometimes wish Tengu would target copy-writers!


  1. I admire your tenacity and dedication. Of course the best part is the skill and your creative talents just overflowing. Ah I am getting tired of my project and of "art" in general. I have a Tengu mask. I did not know it was Tengu. Also there is a Korean mask that looks similar. Have a wonder day Leah, I love your name. Oh I am going to South and North Carolina next month. Maybe I will bump into you somewhere in Asheville. :)

  2. The Tengu and the advertisement make a perfect match. You are so clever! I doubt the copy-writers believe the words they craft, but they know the general public laps them up. The tengu has his beady eyes on all of us.

  3. I have to agree. The combination of your rendering skills and the carefully selected advertisements always go so well together. And this tengu design is a wonderful addition to the collection of beasts.

    I'm particularly fond of how you've achieved a lacquer-like effect with your paintwork. It feels like a mask come to life!

  4. Oh My, Oh My , didn't know about Tengu and hope he doesn't appear around these parts. Amazing that the ad was for a cereal !

  5. uhgg.. monday. I shoulda had an extra bowl of Bran Flakes. They'll be whisperin tomorrow.

    Apparently the pressure was really on in 1930 to look your best. ha.

  6. This is really excellent. By the way, I just gave your blog a Liebster award. You can check out my blog for more information.