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Gyotaku: The ancient Japanese art of printing fish How did fishermen record their trophy catches before the invention of photography? In 19th century Japan, fishing boats were equipped with rice paper, sumi-e ink, and brushes in order to create gyotaku: elaborate rubbings of freshly caught fish. K. Erica Dodge recounts the story of this competitive fishing culture, plus some tips on how to make your very own etchings.