Inspiration from Japan

I’ve been browsing through some of my old posts in draft, trying to figure out which ones I might actually get around to finishing.  I did come across a few different posts about Japan (one is from my trip to Japan in 2010!) which I thought it might be fun to combine.

liberation-burger-wrapper-diagram3023869-slide-201305bThe inspiration to dredge up this content was cross-posted on the medianthro listserv and senseionline (a listserv for teachers of Japanese).  It was a link to a YouTube video called The Spell of OCHOBO, about an innovation to Freshness Burger’s packaging in Japan.  The post explained that Japanese cultural norms require women to demonstrate modesty by having a small mouth, which they should also cover when opened in public.  The restaurant introduced a stiff wrapper depicting a tidy woman’s mouth, as depicted above.  This culturally sensitive Liberation Wrapper led to more than a 200% increase in burger sales to Freshness Burger’s female customers!

My reflections on my own experience in Japan also resurfaced for me recently after reading an article on Japanese metro posters in Fast Company magazine.  These have a different aesthetic and some good reminders about culturally appropriate manners for the public transportation system – which was amazingly clean and organized and fast!  You can see some of the pictures from my trip here.

I was also inspired by a post on Twisted Sifter about a 92 year old grandma and her embroidered Temari balls:


Although I am (slightly?!) less obsessed with Pinterest than I was when I wrote this post about Digital Hoarding, I did post a few of my favorite pictures from that story to my Beautiful Creations board.

Finally, the last little gem from my drafts folder is these personas of Japanese mothers, which I received in my registration packet at the EPIConference in Tokyo in 2010.  They were so cute and appealing I scanned them, and then never got around to posting them.  So here they are!

These were developed as part of a larger study, which was described in the materials as follows:

What is Mama Lab?

Mama Lab will be there for mothers, and thinks about the future of families.

In these few years, mother’s values and behavior has made a big change.  Especially, mothers in their 20’s and 30’s who were born in Generation Y or later has completely different values from mothers who have experienced the bubble economy in Japan.  Mama Lab is a think tank established in 2008 in DENTSU under the idea of “To Evolve Families’ Market of the New Generation from the perspective of Mothers”.  We forecast the future of mothers, children and families, offer solutions on issues from realistic insights, and achieve new businesses.

Mama smile makes the planet happy.

Let’s increase the number of organic links between others and families, mothers and society.  This is is Mama Lab’s heart.

You can learn more about the EPIC conference on their site, and you can see more pictures from my trip to Japan on the Photography section of this site.  In the meantime, I hope you’ve enjoyed this little combined post from my dusty drafts folder!

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