I took pictures of some of the drawings I made in elementary school.
A drawing from 2nd grade.
4 panels story telling assignment from 4th grade.
3 comics I submitted to monthly manga magazine, “Nakayoshi”.
From left, 4th grade, 5th grade and 6th grade. Apparently I submitted every year.
The first two were collaboration work with my best friend, Gimi. The last one, I made it by myself and switched to comedy.
They’re embarrassingly rough, no story arch, only close ups, no background, too much dialogue, etc etc the list of what is “wrong about it” goes on. I was only placed in the lowest level “C-class” and there is no doubt about it.
I made a poster for my bedroom that said “Let’s go to AUSTRALIA” with a drawing of myself holding a koala bear, because the first prize for the comic competition was 1,000,000 YEN (10K USD) and a trip to Australia. Somehow, I believed that I would be the first 10-13 years old to debut and win the first prize. Dream big kid… Sorry it didn’t turn out that way… but I am impressed with my past-self for having motivation, dedication and determination. In a way, my work ethics was built through those years.
I went to a restaurant to see some friends.
While waiting, I saw a cat in the court yard though a window.
Cats are a bit too moody, mysterious and I don’t like how they stare at you.
The first drawing of the cat is pretty hilarious. Do I know how to draw? It doesn’t even look like a cat. Perhaps a stuffed animal?
But as I started drawing, I got obsessed with this cat. The cat slept pretty much the whole time but once in awhile, it moved its position and stared at me for a few seconds as if it were saying
“Did you finish drawing this pose? Fine, I’ll give you another one.”
After an hour, the cat started to stretch, lick paws and gave me variety of quick poses.
The cat left and in exchange, my friends started to arrive.
Thanks cat for keeping a company.
There’s a wonderful school for animation in Asagaya, Tokyo, called Laputa Art Animation School. Students range from 20 years old to 50 years old, from beginners to professionals who want to study further. It has such an amazing energy and I’ve always been curious about the school. Thanks to Ms.Ito from Office H who organized this event for me and I was so excited to mingle with the students.
The founder / main faculty is Fumiko Magari, an amazing stop-motion animator and also one of the most energetic artists I’ve ever met! Almost all the stop-motion I have watched growing up were animated by Ms.Magari. Like these…!
Japanese students are shy, it took so long for them to start asking questions
I’d love to take Ms.Magari’s class one day, to learn from the master.
My friend, Nonoka (6 years old), made a drawing of me. She observed my hair and clothing really well!
We had a discussion about how we shouldn’t judge our art work or compare work with others because everybody is different. It’s funny when you can have a deep conversation with somebody so small. But her mind is already as sophisticated as a full-grown person.
We had an opportunity to visit studio DWARF in Tokyo. We’ve been huge fans of the studio that we were so excited to be at a place where awesome characters come to life.
Meeting “real” domokun & komachan puppets was so special. I was so nervous that I’d break them that I couldn’t even touch them. (This is a total regret)
Everybody at the studio was so generous to share their stories and showed us various props and studio set up. Thank you….. what a precious experience we had!
*We were so “awed” the whole time that we forgot to take pictures. I will make some drawings soon. *