Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797-1862) one of the last great masters of the Japanese ukiyo-e style of woodblock prints and painting. Although he depicted a broad range of subjects, he was most famous for his depictions of the battles of samurai and legendary heroes.
Though I have several of his original prints, my favorite is number 27, Ishikawa Sôsuke Sadatomo at the Battle of Shizu-ga-mine in 1583. This samurai is shown with a bloody and broken sword held high, despite a half dozen arrow wounds.
This print is a reminder that you never stop fighting. Not even when all your weapons are broken and bloody. Not even with seven arrows sticking out of your body. That combat mindset allows people to survive horrible trauma and still live. That combat mindset makes you very hard to kill.
For years, this image was the title page for workbooks for tactical first aid courses I designed and taught.
Limited Edition Prints
Shortly after we completed recording the Tactical Casualty Care series, while on a family outing in Astoria, Oregon, we came across a local woodblock artist, whose work is very art deco, distilled down images. He hand carves each block from wood he has brought in from Japan. It turns out that Peter Nevins is also a huge Samurai film geek. When asked if he could do a transformative simplification of Kuniyoshi’s work, he immediately agreed. After a few drawings back and forth, Peter was able to carve three blocks for us, black, red, and blue, to create the new image for Crisis Medicine. One hundred signed, numbered prints are available on the website now, with T-shirts and other items becoming available as we build the online courses.
Interested in a limited edition print or T-shirt? Email us and get on the list. Or check the website now for prints.