For those who have scanned through my blog or looked at my art elsewhere, you’ve probably seen hints (or obvious examples) of Japanese comic and animation influence (manga and anime respectively). When I first began drawing, it was all I used to draw, or rather, it was the most “fun” for me. Though once I got in college, I decided to tone down on the anime style and instead focus on a more formal artistic training, which really helped me advance in my art.
Granted, most of the stuff I found inspiration from before school was cutesy stuff like this from manga artist Arina Tanemura: Here. And while great looking stuff, there’s way too much of the massive eyes and glitter stuff out there.
But during my final year of school, I found myself in a slump and out of inspiration. I like a lot of art and illustrators, but not much really jumps out at me. Then I remembered that a friend of mine recommended to me a manga called Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure a while back.
Unlike my past sparkly and shiny experiences with manga, Jojo seemed like something crude and strange (and oddly more realistic looking in some ways), so I dismissed it for a long while. This is until I actually took the time to look into the artist of the manga, Araki Hirohiko.
This great artist has quite a record and I found myself becoming inspired by reading about him and better yet, becoming inspired by his gorgeous artwork.
This man has not only become a famous name in Japan, but he even had an exhibition at the Louvre!
To explain how Araki’s artwork inspired me would be a hard thing to pinpoint. He not only has dramatic line work, but his use of color is crazy, but balanced. Though what caught my eye about his work the most is his figure posing skills on all his characters and drawings. The figure is hardly ever “standing there”; each one has their own pose that really makes the drawings come alive.
I always found myself falling short in the expressing department of art, or, er, simply put, I’m too boring. Yet, looking at examples like these gave me confidence to take chances in my work and be more expressive! Especially in color.
Granted, I still get inspiration from a lot of other illustrators’ works, but Araki has become one artist that I have never failed to be inspired by.
All images (c) Araki Hirohiko.