About Takohako & Kelly Christensen

Hello again! I see you’ve clicked to learn more about me. So, I guess I should start by saying I am an illustrator, comic maker, and avid crafter. My name is Kelly Christensen. I use the handle “takohako” (たこはこ、たこ箱) in a lot of places, but not all takohako’s are me!

Southern Roots

I am originally from Mississippi in the southern United States. Growing up queer and gender variant in the Deep South was a difficult experience at times, but I had a great childhood, and there’s a lot of things I love and miss about Mississippi. This is a theme that pops up in a lot of my comics and writing.

I have lived in and loved lots of cities and places including Seattle, WA, Vancouver, BC, and Kyoto, Japan, to name a few. I’m currently in Richmond, BC, near adorably scenic Steveston village. It’s nice to be closer to the countryside, and I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to be a Canadian resident!

Octo-Origins

My formal art education ended after high school. I was admitted to the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) with partial scholarships, but decided to focus on other topics at university. This didn’t keep me from continuing to practice and enjoy doodling, comicking, and other general arts-and-crafts making.

Takohako Designs started in 2010 as a place to sell the felt things I made for fun. The name is a combination of the Japanese words tako (octopus) and hako (box). In Japanese “takohako” doesn’t really mean anything, except maybe a box that you catch cephalopods with… But I doodled a little octopus in a box, and that became the logo! On some older incarnations of the logo, “takohako” is written in Japanese–the updated logo is simpler!

Later, with profits from my felt creations and some other savings, I was able to purchase a button press. Because I was designing and printing everything for my buttons digitally, I started experimenting with other paper products. Now I also offer lots of pun-tastic greeting cards, because there are few things closer to my heart than puns and whimsical food illustrations.

Here I am tabling at Craftacular 11 in Vanouver.

Here I am tabling at Craftacular 11 in Vanouver.

DIY & Maker Style

I don’t limit myself very much in what I make–I like to learn and do everything! But most often you will find me making greeting cards, postcards, stickers, gift tags, pinback buttons, lots of paper things. I also like to craft things with felt and clay. Oh, and I love making comics! You can keep up to date on what I’m doing, as I’m doing it by, following me on Twitter and Instagram.

I’m interested in self-publishing/zine making, so I have a variety of short run things available and I’m always looking to make more. I cut and bind all of my products myself. If you’re interested in a custom product or collaborating on something, shoot me a message over at my contact page. Thanks for reading!