Two quotes about Christian identity

2014/09/24

“We have to understand, it’s not those who call themselves Christians who are true sons & daughters of God, but those who follow Jesus, regardless of what they call themselves.”
– Boze Herrington, in his Facebook post

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’”
– Matthew 7:21-23

A quote about church culture

2014/09/23

“Christians, don’t let racist, misogynistic, and homophobic comments ‘slide’. Stand up for the bullied, not the bullies. Advocate for the oppressed, not the oppressors. And don’t let anyone shame you as ‘divisive’ when you do so.”

- Rachel Held Evans, in her excellent and highly recommended blog post “Changing the Culture that Enabled Mark Driscoll: 6 Ways Forward”

A quote about “holiness”

2014/09/22

“Jesus never troubled the troubled or harassed the harassed. He never belittled the belittled, marginalized the marginalized or excluded the excluded.

These were the ones He befriended, came alongside of, and called disciples and apostles. These were the ones whose names and identities He said would be forever attached to the Gospel message. It was these He said would enter the Kingdom in front of the religious ‘scholars’ and fundamentalists of the day.

The only ones He ever pointed fingers at were the finger pointers.

So if you, in the name of holiness, seek to emulate Jesus and so exclude, marginalize, harass, belittle and finger-point, make sure you don’t end up looking like the only people He ever condemned.

Jesus is for the ‘sinners’ of this world, but stands opposed to those who are all too eager to slap that label on another.”

- Jeff Turner, from his Facebook post

A quote about “Christian accountability”

2014/09/16

“Friendly reminder that someone who has never invested in your life has no place to criticize you or ‘hold you accountable’. Being able to challenge someone or ‘speak the truth in love’ means actually needing to have a relationship + genuinely caring about them.” – Rebekah Richardson

(Via Boze Herrington’s Facebook post)

Keiko Kitagawa in “Digital TV Guide” October 2014 issue (all editions, raw scans)

2014/09/10

The above cover is from the Kansai edition; however, all editions use the same cover photo.

Source – Itsumo: Keiko Kitagawa

Keiko Kitagawa interview article in “with” September 2014 issue (English translation)

2014/09/08

Keiko Kitagawa’s 4 major autumn fashion styles

From serious works to comedy, not only does Miss Keiko Kitagawa have the acting capability to play different feminine characteristics as required by her different roles, her natural styles often seen in her variety show appearances are also overwhelmingly favoured by women of her age. This time we invited Miss Kitagawa to share with “with” readers her fashion styles for autumn and what captures her attention today!

Look 1: Knit cardigan with stripes X white trousers

“Sporty styles are a focus for autumn wear; check out this type of striped cardigan! As long as a white bottom is chosen, even darker tops can show off a lively look.”

“I like the colours of this combination; as I prefer regular glasses over sunglasses, I would use eyeglasses as an accessory for my outfit.”

I believe fashion style is expressed by the self

Wearing simple black overalls to the photo shoot, Miss Keiko Kitagawa already had impressive achievements since her teenage model years. Today she still loves fashion and when trying on the new autumn styles prepared by us, she constantly added her opinion about the outfit such as “with this outfit, I want my hair to be like this”.

“Fashion is very interesting! Although I rarely have the opportunity to spend a whole day shopping in leisure, but when I am able to end work early, I would go out right away, or I would buy the outfit prepared by the stylist so I can enjoy fashion. Recently I like the kind of yarn top such as that in Look 1 with the rhinestones on the collar! I have many (laughs) in white and black; as long as it is smooth and shiny, they look good worn by itself or under a jacket, or matched with a cardigan such as for today. It feels good to be able to wear different looks from one type of clothing.”

We asked if she has any reference styles or looks that she aspires to…

“There are no specific styles, but I have felt ‘that is amazing’ after watching some senior actresses. A few days ago I met Ms. Miki Maya and saw her deliberately combine jeans with a denim shirt in an outfit then add a jacket; although it was a masculine look overall, she wore high heels to bring out a completely feminine style. This kind of individual style combination is very alluring!

I feel the clothes I choose would naturally display my condition, so when I dress myself now I would think carefully and not pick the outfit only for that day’s purpose. Recently, while picking out my outfit, I thought ‘even though I like masculine styles, it seems I have been wearing neater looks’ and try to find styles that are not too sweet but also not too sexy, to achieve a comfortable balance that I feel good in.”

Look 2: Logo cotton top X seamless A-line skirt

“A-line skirts have been popular since the spring. Those that use thick material to build a three dimensional effect can be combined with logo cotton tops to achieve a casual look.”

“Since I bought a similar black A-line skirt, I decided to tuck in my top. Even though I usually wear t-shirts or yarn tops, I also like the sporty feel of cotton tops.”

Look 3: Cardigan in autumn colours X ladylike dress

“Elegant ladylike dresses need to be matched with cardigans in autumn colours in order to reflect the season’s look. Only vintage accessories are chosen.”

“Regardless of whether it’s feminine or popular styles, right now I am seeking a balance that makes me feel comfortable. I hope to repeat this exercise while at the same time create my own fashion style!”

“When I am meeting someone or appearing in talk shows, I would to wear a dress. I especially like vintage ladylike styles.”

Look 4: Big earrings X rhinestone necklace

“I like big vintage rhinestone necklaces as they allow the outfit to release an air of elegance.”

Upon encountering a bottleneck I would find another way, and repeat the cycle!

Broadcasting since this July, Miss Kitagawa plays a lead character in the new drama “Hero 2″. As this is a sequel of a popular show, Miss Kitagawa said that even though she initially arrived on set with anxiety, once shooting began the atmosphere was very cordial. Lead by her co-star Mr. Kimura, other senior actors accepted her warmly which made her very happy.

“To the other actors in the cast, I am perhaps a little sister. This production is like a ‘stage show’ in that many scenes are driven by the script. Since I have not often been in this kind of production before, it is a new challenge for me. Even though sometimes I would anxiously feel ‘OK, I need to control my timing for saying my lines’, as an actress I can take this as training.”

From comedies to historical dramas, her works are varied and she has played all types of roles, such as the daughter of a rich family, an apprentice scriptwriter, a female chef and so on. Each time Miss Kitagawa’s performance deeply impressed us; this time she plays a strong administrator. When she accepts new challenges, does she feel anxious?

“Of course I do! But now I always think ‘be my best’ and practise in my mind using imagery! I would try to approximate my imagined scene to be as similar as possible as reality…when I find the point of ‘it’s probably like this’ I would head towards that direction with all that I have. If I am wrong or if I encounter a bottleneck, I would return to my starting point and think of another way, and then repeat the cycle. When I am faced with something I am unsure about, I believe it is important to not be lost; this is like imagining being the women I admire, as long as I find the thought of ‘I want to be like this’ it means I have found the answer. What remains is just hard work!”

My goal is a meaningful personal life, and I am challenging cooking right now

With 11 years’ experience in the entertainment industry and her 28th birthday this year, what changes does Miss Kitagawa have in her personal life? Is there anything she wants to do?

“I am coming to the end of “Daisakkai”! (a period of bad luck according to Rokusei Senjutsu astrology) During that period, I was always working…my personality is such that when I make a decision, that is the only thing that I see. But I think I should also find hobbies outside work or slowly create time for my own enjoyment! I originally wanted to take more time to read and watch movies; I should practise how to schedule myself.

What I have started to do is cooking. In the drama ‘Miwotsukushi Ryoricho’ I play a chef, and as I get older what I eat easily reflects on my physical condition. As the saying goes, ‘the guts don’t lie’ (laughs). So when I have the opportunity to cook, I would browse Cookpad and cook myself. Yesterday I stewed beef in red wine and also made curry! Even if I am by myself, making an effort to cook leads to tasty results and feels meaningful. In the past I often say to friends ‘which restaurant should we go to’, but now after learning cooking it becomes inviting them to my home and thinking ‘what should I cook’. This is a nice change!”

Images from kizashis. Translated by this blogger using the Hong Kong Chinese edition with reference to the Japanese original where necessary.

Keiko Kitagawa interview article in “Nikkei Woman” June 2014 issue (English translation)

2014/08/31

Q – Please write a message for our readers!

“Day after day…the only ‘now’ you can enjoy is the image of yourself, right here, right now.” – Keiko Kitagawa

Work Saved Me, Even When I Hit Rock Bottom

The movie “Miss Nightmare – The Movie” was filmed in the scorching heat of summer. The main character was a girl called “Miss Nightmare” who had prophetic, calamitous dreams that resulted in attacks on people. The character’s home room teacher, who finds out about Miss Nightmare, is played by Keiko Kitagawa.

“Because this was my first time starring in a drama movie, I was really glad. I’ve had fans who watched my drama series tell me that they really liked my role in this film, and I’ve been glad to hear how vocal they’ve been about it.”

Lots of interwoven footage was used from different locations to create the “dream” footage that appears throughout the film. There were a lot of specialized shooting techniques used and many scenes that required green screens, so this was definitely a new experience for you in a lot of ways.

“I’ve always had unexpected experiences throughout my life, so I don’t feel like it’s really hard to deal with. For example, last year was my first time taking on this kind of drama role. I like to roll with the punches. And with this new role – I think I feel lucky to have had this experience. I really think my work has saved me in this regard. And in my private life as well, of course. (laughs)”

When you were 24 years old, there seemed to be a big rush of people who wanted you to get married or were anxious to see that, did it make you uneasy?

“I always say that my fans are my staff. But sometimes I have to do my best not to laugh off some of their concerns about me.”

But in all her honesty, she is never the kind of person to forget her fans or brush them aside, and I think that’s wonderful.

5 Questions to Keiko

Q – What are your thoughts on turning 28 years old?

I want to challenge myself to do new things. I’d like to experience doing a live performance in front of an audience on stage. That’s something I want to try out in the future.

Q – Do you have any rules about how you use your money?

Those of us in the entertainment industry try not to lose their common sense when it comes to money. But at the same time, I don’t spare any expense when it comes to gifts or celebrations. Maybe that’ll come back to haunt me someday? (laughs)

Q – What do you do when you can’t sleep?

The longer you can’t sleep, the harder it becomes to actually fall asleep. So I try to spend those times reading a book, or listening to L’Arc-en-Ciel on my headphones.

Q – How do you feel about co-starring alongside child actors?

It would be a lie if I said that I think it’s good for children. But I know personally I learned a lot about being the teacher Ms. Ayami when I was on set with her.

Q – What’s your secret to not being afraid of failure?

When I first heard the expression “even if you have to pay for it, you should go through a struggle”, I didn’t understand it. I really started to understand that saying recently. If you live in fear of failure, you’ll have a lot of regrets.

(Images from Maegane. Translated by Miss Dream under their “Hire Us!” program. Paid for by this blog to the benefit of all English-speaking and English-learning Keiko fans).

Keiko Kitagawa in “Judge!”

2014/08/24

An album of Keiko Kitagawa screenshots in the 2014 movie “Judge!” has been posted and can be seen by clicking here. A sample of the album:

Want to hear Keiko speak in English? She explains the Japanese fish stick “chikuwa” (竹輪) in this movie. The scene can be seen below or by clicking here.

Keiko Kitagawa and Momoiro Clover Z in the May 2014 issue of “Walker” magazines (raw scans)

2014/08/10

Keiko Kitagawa and Momoiro Clover Z on the cover of the May 2014 issue of “Tokyo Walker”:

Keiko Kitagawa and Momoiro Clover Z in the May 2014 issue of “Walker” magazines, all editions:

Keiko Kitagawa and Momoiro Clover Z in the May 2014 issue of “Fukuoka Walker”:

Rika Izumi in her “book-in-book” special supplement inside “Ray” March 2014 issue (English translation of part)

2014/08/09

Blogger’s note: Rika’s special supplement spans 12 pages and covers a wide range of topics. Due to resource, time and space constraints I have decided to only commission for a translation of the last two pages, which contains Rika’s outlook in life and her personal thoughts about herself. The first 10 pages are included as raw scans.

Speaking with 25 Year-Old Ms. Izumi

At the age of 25 you’re a respectable adult, but your self-confidence hasn’t truly blossomed yet. In the midst of this process is Ms. Rika Izumi – what are your thoughts on the matter?

“At this age your life is in a crossroads. And you’re impatient because you want it to be game time.”

It’s been five years since your debut in RAY. Now that you’re 25 years old, what is your state of mind like?

I think 25 years old is a crossroads for models. You have to consider if you want to keep modelling, or if you’re going to quit. For me, I think I’m gradually deciding which direction I want to go in, but at the same time I feel impatient because I want to keep growing and developing what I do. At age 25, since I kind of rebooted my career 3 years ago, I haven’t reached all of the goals I set for myself then for five years down the line, so there’s kind of a gap that I’m operating in. Rather than try to bridge that gap, I’m just starting fresh all over again.

At three years into your new career, are you where you imagined you would be in five years?

When I left modelling for a short period of time, it wasn’t because I didn’t want to model anymore, but because I wanted to be the kind of model who “competes with her own name”. I think I’m an atypical model in that regard, and I always wanted to give the readers a life-sized view of me – which takes a lot of personal strength and resolve to do since its vulnerable. But it’s important to me to do things in my own style. I wanted people to think when they hear “Rika Izumi”, to associate that with “originality”. That was necessary to me, to be original.

Have you changed your stance on things over the last five years?

When I thought about where I’d be in five years, I hoped that I would level up in my modelling, so to speak, and continue to create cute spreads for “Ray” magazine. I wanted to learn to wear all kinds of skirts, learn to turn up the corners of my lips to make my smile wider…so I used to practice doing that sort of thing in front of the mirror. But I think now that comes naturally from the work itself. People would look through the pictures in the book and wonder, “Which one is Rika?”, and when I heard that it was hard for me (cries). So I knew that my next step would be to show my true self.

When you got your first cover shoot, it would seem that your career had started to really take off, but you said it made you feel a little gloomy, right?

Well, I owe where I am now because of other people. And I don’t want to quit without listening to what other people say.

It’s not just about meeting expectations; I think I might have been tired? So that made me uneasy. And it seemed like every time I turned around, there was some cute new girl starting out. So rather than do a complete makeover and change the Rika Izumi image I had built for the last five years, I wanted to evolve instead.

“The first thing I decided I ever wanted in life was to be a ‘model’.”

I know that you’re in a transitional period right now, but what are some things you’re working on?

Well, I’m definitely working on trying to understand myself more. And of course I’ve been working on developing hot new fashion trends too. The first thing is really about self-discovery. As for the second, I’m putting the things I love best on display. In terms of my work, I think I’m working hard on my career. And I really believe in what I’m doing. This magazine’s image has always been about doing new experimental things, so I’ve been getting adventurous with trying out new facial expressions during our shoots.

Because this career is my life’s work, I am really fired up about what I’m doing. I want to keep trying more and more new things. I am enjoying trying out new things and living my life as me, as Rika.

“I Will Always…be in the Style of Love”

I think Ray’s outlook on the world has always been about love. They are always chasing after the image of smiling girls who shine brightly. Doing what you love is really important to me, which is why I enjoy modeling so much. Being cute, soft, and being able to make cute gestures and facial expressions is important, of course, but those who shine from within are the ones I love the best. And when you can laugh wholeheartedly in front of the camera and show your true self, that is the best. (laughs)

Lately I’ve been feeling like it’s my turn to be loved. But before someone can love you, they have to love themselves. And I think in order to love someone else properly, you have to admit to yourself your own faults. So you almost have to break your own character to really be in love. And you have to be in it for yourself, already living for yourself entirely. The sense of fulfillment and happiness you seek can’t be found in someone else, so that’s my “style of love”.

I think everyone should develop their own style of love that allows them to connect with others.

The secret to becoming a girl who is loved is by loving others. – Rika Izumi

Translated by Miss Dream under their “Hire Us!” program. Paid for by this blog to the benefit of all English-speaking and English-learning Rika fans)


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