‘My Way’ by Craig Olson
‘My Way’ begins in 1997, when Craig Olson moved to Japan to continue his Bujinkan training. At this time, since students were generally banned from photography and video, if you wanted to record what was happening at the dojo, writing your own notes after class was the only option. What was training with Sensei like back then? You could only know if you were there, but we can hear from people like Craig who felt it.
In a sense, ‘My Way’ is a prequel to ‘Masaaki Hatsumi Dojo Art.’ Craig takes us to the dojo when Hatsumi Sensei was a bit younger, the training was considerably rougher, and Sensei was still developing his style of expression with the brush. The artworks in ‘My Way’ are Craig’s, so only he can breathe life into them for us. He does this by reflecting on the training (and his bruises) and sharing conversations he had with his instructors. Craig’s commentary shows how memorable these paintings are for students — a proof of Sensei’s effectiveness in teaching with art.
— An excerpt from the foreword by Steve Olsen
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