Over ten new designs showing off battles so epic they transcend art periods.
It seems like only yesterday when we first saw Ukiyo-e Heroes, a series of traditional Japanese woodblock prints depicting scenes from video games. But that was five years ago now, and since then the masterminds behind the project, designer Jed Henry and printmaker Dave Bull, have gained even more experience.
When we revisited them last year, they’d created even more new stunning prints, and starting today the Ukiyo-e Heroes series is entering their next phase which you can be a part of: Ukiyo-e Heroes: Boss Fights.
▼ It doesn’t get more epic than Final Fantasy VII’s Cloud and
Sephiroth facing off in the ultimate boss battle.
As they explain on their Kickstarter page, over the past five years their resources have grown considerably, allowing them to produce much more complex and detailed images this time around.
While not all of the new images necessarily depict actual “boss fights,” they have more action to them than previous works, showing off intense battles worthy of the title.
▼ For a look into the incredible process of making these woodblock prints,
check out this video showing the making of the Metroid print “Infestation.”
If you’d like to own one for yourself, then now’s the perfect time. A pledge of US$35 gets you a high-quality giclée print of your choice, printed on 12 by 17 inch (30.5 by 43 centimeter) washi paper, and sealed by the designer Jed Henry himself.
▼ An example of the giclée print,
with a smartphone for scale. It’s pretty big!
And a pledge of $150 gets you an authentic, handmade woodblock print by Dave Bull. The woodblock prints are seven by nine inches (about 17.5 by 22.5 centimeters), and are made on handmade washi paper. Each one is signed by the craftspeople involved in its making.
▼ An example of the woodblock print, with a key for scale.
Holding this in your hands feels like holding a piece of alternate history.
Jed Henry has prepared a bunch of new designs for the Ukiyo-e Heroes: Boss Fights series, so go ahead and feast your eyes upon these amazing pictures:
▼ First up is “A Trial of Strength,” inspired by the recent
Nintendo Switch hit The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
▼ “Two Souls Entwined” pits two of the Japanese-inspired
Overwatch characters, Genji and Hanzo, against each other.
▼ “Blood and Thunder” brings the monsters from
Monster Hunter right up close and personal.
▼ And if you wanted more Overwatch, this unbelievable
four-panel set depicts the main heroes battling against each other…
▼ …in one incredible scene.
▼ And for those interested in classic designs, there’s
“A Young Man Shakes Heaven” inspired by Shadow of the Colossus…
▼ …”The Serpent Strikes” from Metal Gear…
▼ …and “The Dragon’s Gift” from Dragon Ball.
Hey, it may not be from a video game, but it sure is damn cool.
▼ And for the top incentive, you can get all ten of the original Ukiyo-e Heroes
woodblock prints bound together in authentic Edo Period book style.
For more details on the Ukiyo-e Heroes: Boss Battle series, be sure to check out their Kickstarter page. And if you’d like to pick up some of their previous designs, they’re available for purchase on their website.
And if you’re ever in the Tokyo area and have an inkling to make woodblock prints of your own, then you’ll definitely want to schedule a print party at Dave Bull’s print shop in Asakusa. In fact, that sounds like something we’ll have to try out ourselves….
Source, images: Kickstarter