Tatsuro Kiuchi is one of my favourite illustrators when it comes to simplicity in digital design. Although his work appears to be composed using traditional methods like screen printing, the bulk of the work is done using digital means. This doesn’t affect the hand-made feel of his work and the textures he brings out in each piece.
Interestingly, Tatsuro was a biology graduate in Tokyo, before turning to design through another course, based in Pasadena, California and now lives in Tokyo.
He has answered a few questions on his work process.
How do you plan an illustration once you receive a brief?
I think my procedure is quite standard.
1. I think about ideas in my head first.
2. Then when I have some images in my head (these can be somewhat obscure), I do thumbnail sketches or doodles in my sketchpad. With this process, I am making images less obscure, and try coming up with clearer visuals.
3. After that, I do color sketches of a couple of compositions I like. I draw and paint directly on screen with a pen tablet. I try to find some reference images, and occasionally take pictures at this stage. Usually, I send these color sketches to art directors.
What are the materials and tools that you use to create the work in your style?
Photoshop (Brush tools and eraser tools mainly), Wacom tablet, some scanned and stocked textures.
The culture of which country do you think influences your art the most?
â“’ Tatsuro Kiuchi, 2009
What are you working on at the moment?
I am working on my comic series “The Earthling”. I am regularly contributing to a quarterly magazine where they run 4 new episodes of “The Earthling” each issue.
Thanks Tatsuro and good luck!