Yamamoto Bumpodo


This is an amazing art materials shop. I always hunt these places out to see what interesting things might be found in the places we visit. 

In Vietnam I really struggled to find anywhere that sold a watercolour paint brush. Eventually I struck lucky in Hue but in Hoi An, which has an art school, we could find nothing and any directions to possible locations proved fruitless.

In KL it has taken two return visits to find a shop that sells A6 postcard watercolour papers at the required 300g weight. Both in Subang Jaya and Petaling Street, the art shops had no such thing. It wasn’t until I was pottering around Bangsar Village with Polly that we found a shop selling just what I needed. 

But this is half the fun, the looking for the shop which takes you necessarily off the beaten track to parts of a city that might hold other surprises.

Here in Fukuoka I stumbled across this two storey place on the way back from Hakata, the main railway station. I returned today to discover an Aladdin’s cave of surprises – a wall filled with differing weights and styles of postcard papers; ink fed calligraphy paint brushes; powdered pigments sold by the weight; wood block printing tools; high tech light weight travelling easels; old school drafting equipment; architectural modelling materials. I was lucky to escape with only a small tube of Chinese White watercolour paint, a Tachikawa 0.1 fountain pen and ink cartridges, and of course some more postcard papers, all made in Japan.

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