1. Before we go to the main point of this interview, would you please
introduce yourself and tell us a bit of what you've been doing
I was born and raised in Hokkaido, Japan. I grew up in a very small town, where population of about 6,000. I moved to Sapporo, the capitol of Hokkaido after high school to go to an art school. I started to show my artwork in the U.S. since 2001, and moved to Seattle since 2005. I am working for a gallery show in NY right now.
2. Would you please tell us how you got interested in digital illustration
for the first the first time and how was the beginning of your carrier
in this industry?
All my artwork is painted done with brushes with acrylic, not digital. That's only way I know how to paint. Painting and drawing is always my biggest passion since I was a little child. I was painting and drawing whole my life but I couldn't find a chance to introduce my work to the public in Japan. When I was late 20s, one of my friend from the U.S. suggested to try a gallery in the U.S. So I did and my painter's career started.
3. What inspires you the most?
My inspiration comes from every directions. I love animals, music and movies, good story of films or lyric of a song are always inspiration. And anything happens in my life or any word someone said. Politics, sports or martial art etc... the world is giving me ideas everyday. But recently, I am inspired more and more by animals and natures.
4. How about your works which are very relatable with Japanese
culture, can you please explain it to us?
Well, I'm a Japanese :) This culture is in my blood. But I enjoy it more since I moved to the U.S., because I can see it more clearly from the outside. I keep discovering things I didn't see before.
5. Would you please tell us about animals and women that are always
represented on your work?
One of the reasons is that animals and women are my favorite things to draw. Every animals is beautiful, it's always fun to work on their colors and details. Like many little girls with a passion to draw pretty girls or princesses, I was a girl like them and I still have that passion today. I always enjoy draw girls, many times with a fashion style that I love. But also, they are actually a symbol of my thoughts about the relationship between human and nature. Humans and nature always have a effect on each other, no matter where we live.
6. What do you think about saving endangered animal efforts?
I have a strong feeling about this. Since we are a part of the nature, we have to try to find the way to share the world with animals. I am from Japan and live in the U.S. now. Both advanced nations are consumers of the world. There are many things here you can buy from all over the world. But here are many other countries that people have a narrow choice. Unfortunately some of them have to sell what they have to survive - nature and animals. It's really difficult to fix both situations. But "the buyers" responsibility is to know what is going on behind scenes and think about every purchase. Unfortunately, for some people it's a hobby to own wild animals as a pet. I am strongly against owning wild animals. Because they should live in wild, not in a cage. They have their jobs in nature, and nature needs them. They were created that way, not for human's company. Also I'm against killing animals for body parts.I'm even against any entertainment with wild animals, such as circus or zoo. If "the buyers" stop paying, "the sellers" will close theses business. It's the buyer's responsibility to respect nature. And to know there are things you shouldn't buy, even if you can.
7. In your opinion, can a designer or a visual artist play a significant
role in saving ecosystem, such as saving endangered animals
Absolutely. We can be their voice. Design and creation is our weapon. It won't happens in overnight, but the world will change little by litte. Nobody cared about ecosystem 50 years ago. Things are not going to stay same forever. I guess someone's life will not be completely the same even after reading this interview. Education is the strongest weapon. We can help with our talent.
8. If you get a chance to create a work related to a campaign of saving
endangered animals, which animal will you choose for the
campaign? And your reason, please?
I already created several paintings for endangered animals such as tigers. About tigers, I feel sympathy because they are a Asian cat, killed for their body parts, and losing their forrest habitat. Their number are horribly low. I hope they could survive. I don't want to see the world without tigers.
CUP & SAUCER, etc Limited edition Cup & Saucer, and Pillows are on sale from Click For Art.
YEAR OF THE FIRE HORSE
My new show "Year of the Fire Horse" is this June at Foley Gallery in N.Y. I will also join Artshow Busan in South Korea, and some benefit events for animal shelters this Spring. More info coming soon. Check back with my Facebook!