Interview by Harryet Candee Photographs of Kinuko by Sabine Vollmer von Falken
Contemporary Painter & Illustrator
Harryet Candee: Who in your life was your inspiration for entering the world of fantasy and storytelling through art?
Kinuko Y. Craft: I think I was born with a certain set of receptors for fondness of mylh, legend and fairy tales. The house I grew up in was filled with books of all kinds, on all sorts of subjects such as children's stories, science, biology and mythology. There were my father's picture books that he had when he was in grade school. There were also the children's picture books of my older sister and my Grandfather's set of books about art of the world which covered both western and eastern art. As a preschooler I found all of these mesmerizing. You could say I was almost literally born into the middle of them. All of them had plates of fabulous fine art and illustrations. But early on. I was most attracted to Italian Renaissance work. They were intricate, complex, very enigmatic storytelling pieces. After I started school and finally learned how to read. I discovered comic books. That was my second awakening. I devoured them like some ogre with an insatiable appetite. After the comic book attack. the libraries of the schools I attended provided all I needed. I read virtually everything I could get my hands on. Books were fuel to my imagination. I think I was just really lucky to be in the right places at the right time. Fortunately. no one ever attempted to change how I and my head were wired. There isn't any one person who was an inspiration to me. However. it was Homer's Iliad and Odyssey that truly ignited my imagination, setting off fireworks in my head like the 4th of July.