Our homework was to write why the koto piece “Rokudan” sounded japanese. Rokudan is a japanese koto song which sounds rather different from modern koto music, which has large amounts of influence from modern European and American music, such as rock. Rokudan starts out with a slow, easy start, but gradually speeds up to a much faster end. This song is 27 measures long, and is rather interesting. It uses many of the traditional “koto techniques” such as “Shan”, “Sha-Sha”, “Kororin”, and “Ato-Oshi”. These koto techniques are commonly used in most pieces of koto music. What I think makes this song sounds Japanese is the fact that the song uses many parts used in music from japan. The scale used for this music is called “Hirajoshi”. This is a scale consisting of the following notes: D:G:A:Bb:Eb. This tuning gives the music a darker, more melancholy feeling. I feel this is one of the reasons why Rokudan sounds japanese.
In Music class today, we did not play any instruments for a change. 2 of the Japanese music teachers and a special guest presented 3 japanese instruments. The instruments were the Koto, the Shakuhachi, and the Shamisen. My favorite was the Shakuhachi. I don’t know why, but it sounded the most natural and the most beautiful in my opinion. The sound of the Shakuhachi surprised me the most since I expected it to be more reedy and windy than the melodic. The melodic tones of it were suprising. I personally liked the song “Deep Forest” the best. If I have gotten the name wrong, I am sorry. It made me feel as if I were actually in the forest they were in. The song also made me very sleepy. I am amazed I did not snore halfway through. I liked the melody, as it had a emotional feel to it, which made me feel awed and sleepy. The music sounded “Japanese” because of the melodies, which sounded particularly realistically like in japan. Also, the occasional bit of singing in japanese from Mr. Patterson helped too. I think it was because of the melody and scale the most though.
Recently, in art class, we have been making line drawings. Our unit, as you can probably tell, our unit is about line drawings. Our “Unit question”, a question which is the basis for all of our learning in this unit is “How can we communicate visually?”. Our “Significant concept”, a concept which is also the basis for all our learning is “Line can be used to convey shape, texture, and tone.”. Our line drawings were done so that we would use different line techniques to show shape and texture. For my progress during this unit, I have successfully managed to use many line techniques for my final project, something which i could never do at the beginning of the unit. At the beginning of the unit, I could only use hatching or cross-hatching for my project, but now I can use stippling and many other things, such as scumbling. My drawing is a mix of many photos from kamikochi, a beautiful place in japan.For my drawing, I have managed find several weaknesses, and several strengths. For my strengths, I added the stipple and hatching in the mountains so that they had depth and shadows and looked like the mountains in the photos. I also did the stipple on the ground for dirt and sand reasonably well, as they had texture and shading. For my weaknesses, my river looks like a sheet of plastic instead of actual water. I think I could have corrected this using a different line texture, such as the infamous squiggly lines. For another weakness, I think I did the cross-hatching by the trees as a form of shading badly since they look completely different than the other shadows nearby. I would say that another weakness is how the duck looks completely unrealistic and has the texture of sand. Overall, I would say that my drawing is reasonably good, but there is room for improvement. Next time, if there is a next time, I would correct all fo the problems said, but in the process cause some new ones. But it was still fun. I enjoyed this unit.