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Q&A with Satsuki Shibuya

Artist and painter from California

My name is Satsuki Shibuya and when people ask what I do, the easiest label to relate to seems to be artist, although I find myself flowing between different forms of creativity. I’ve worked within music, fabrics, printmaking, sewing, designing, curating and consulting, just to share a few, but lately my explorations have steered me towards drawing/painting and photography. A recent thought: it’s not about the medium, but the intent in which something was created. To further say, I believe it is not about the labels we carry, but in the thoughts we bring to life.


It depends on what I’m outputting,  but right now my go-to tools are: caran d’ache pablo color pencils, holbein artists’ gouache, iPhone 4s camera, canon 7d and miscellaneous papers. More than anything, though, I believe my favorite tools are my thoughts, concepts and spirit that drive the work that I do as it is what allows for true expression to shine through.

Ideal work environment

A quiet space with ample natural light, windows that allow me to see out into nature, sometimes bossa nova or instrumental music playing in the background, a large desk with ample room to spread all of my favorite things on to and a comfortable, fabric lined chair that I can sit back in, curl up to and be ridged in, all depending on my mood. I tend to like working alone as it allows me to let go, get lost in the process and be one with the flow without interruptions.


It comes from all aspects of everyday life — books that have interesting thoughts, blogs with beautiful pictures, watching the swaying leaves on the lemon tree outside my studio window as the wind caresses it, childhood journeys, mediation visions. I get excited when my mind connects dots of disparate ideas and brings them together to examine new perspectives towards our world.

© Satsuki Shibuya

Admire most

As I feel that my inspiration comes from so many different places, my admiration for individuals also seem to be from different walks of life. Some that come to mind are: Rei Kawakubo, Miwa Akihiro, Hayao Miyazaki, Joe Hisaishi, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Yayoi Kusama, my vocal and spiritual teacher Florence Riggs, Stella McCartney, Dalai Lama and many more, it just seems to be that time of day where my mind is drifting off to other thoughts.

Below are some images to share & here is a link to some music compositions:

© Satsuki Shibuya