You don’t need Hayao Miyazaki-level drawing skills or magical powers, as long as you’ve got some basic office/school supplies.
While Hayao Miyazaki’s critically acclaimed film Spirited Away is full of stand-out scenes, one that has the greatest relevance to the plot comes when the witch Yubaba uses her magic to make protagonist Chihiro forget her own name, and with it a large part of her past and identity. To perform the incantation, the enchantress takes a paper with Chihiro’s name written on it with the kanji 千尋, waves her hand, and causes the 尋 to disappear, leaving the singular kanji 千, pronounced Sen, which becomes Chihiro’s name for most of the anime.
▼ Yubaba steals Chihiro’s name
It’s such an important moment that it’s even referenced in the anime’s original Japanese title: Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi, or “The Spiriting Away of Sen and Chihiro.” But while the unforgettable visual comes from Miyazaki’s fertile imagination, it turns out that it’s actually possible to recreate in real life, as demonstrated in this amazing video from Japanese Twitter user @namiki_0707.
椪木 まき (@namiki_0707) April 28, 2017
It turns out that this anime recreation is actually pretty easy to do. Using a marker, @namiki_0707 simply writes “Chihiro” in kanji on a whiteboard, then pours a small amount of water over the second kanji. Since whiteboards don’t absorb the ink used to write on them, the ink itself has to solidify, and adding water causes the kanji’s components to break off in chunks, and so when @namiki_0707 tilts the whiteboard, gravity causes the water to slide downwards, carrying the latter half of Chihiro’s name along with it.
“Once I found you could make writing float using a whiteboard and water, all I’ve been doing is reenacting Spirited Away,” tweeted @namiki_0707. It’s an amazing salute to the Academy Award-winning film, and a pleasant reminder that, while it’s not the norm, every now and again anime sort of is like reality.
Top image ©SoraNews24
Follow Casey on Twitter, where’s he’s hoping baked goods-delivering flying witches are the next thing from Ghibli anime that turns out to be possible in reality.