Tsubakubi | Skillshare Projects

Chris Kubikajiri

Owner - Eldritch Brothers Piercing




I've really wanted to get into the indenpendent toy making for a few years now. It got placed on the back burner as I was opening my own tattoo and piercing studio. Now I'm finally getting some time to work on all my back logged projects. 

This was originally going to be a manga zine, about two tsuba Tsukumogami that are searching of Sengoku period Japan for their swords. It was going to be something short, and basically a drawn out dick joke. 

Tsukumogami, a japanese yokai (supernatural entities), are any object that reaches it's 100th birthday and becomes alive and self aware. If the object is damaged and abbandoned they become malevolent, with their damaged parts creating a sinister look. You've probably seen atleast one or two of these like the Kasa-obake  (umbrella monster) or the Chōchinobake (lantern monster)                           


I was messing around with the idea of a pair of tsuba (hand gaurd of katana) reach their 100th birthday and become self aware, but realise they are missing their blades. They then venture around Sengoku period Japan looking for them and encounter other yokai and some of the old culture of Japan. It was also a comedic side story to a Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima (Lone wolf and Cub, Samurai Assassin) inspired samurai manga I was working on with a friend. 

Tsuba can be very bland and basic shaped to super intricate and stylized. Really depended on the time period or the importance of the sword/owner. 

These guys become the first and only real character I had created. I nammed them and the short 'Tsubakubi". I wanted them to be kinetic and shape changing. Being able to change their shape, length of arms, faces, etc. I also wanted to blend their cute and silliness with the creepy and wierd look of old yokai wood block prints. I also really liked the facial features of the behelit from the Berserk series. 


I found some old page drafts of the tsubakubi:

I guess as a toy, I had conserns about how it would stand, or leg designs in general. I wanted a japanese toy/kaiju feel to them. I had a rough thought last night while looking for a blank to paint, and found a Kidrobot Omi. I could see tsuba shape supported with a plastic display like the OMI's, with weird long arms. Making it more of a DIY platform..

Still just messing around with some ideas for this guy. I have other toy ideas, but I think I want to use this class to focus on working through this one first. It's been sitting at the bottom of a stack of projects for so long,  that it's either time to use it for something or abbandon it. Watched the first two videos, so I think I'll watch some more and do some sketching. Thanks for checking it out. 


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