Manga art is the art of drawing something into existence with the power of light and/or thought. When it’s done right, it can become a work of art, or a game, or even a story. But what does it even mean to be a manga artist? Is it like art? Do we even even need to be artists? Is it like a game? How you define it can change your audience’s feelings of what you’re doing. It’s a different definition of the word art than manga has ever had, and one that’s very difficult for most manga creators to navigate.
What’s your role as a manga artist?
The most important part of my job as a manga artist is to create a manga that doesn’t suck.
I don’t like working at one spot — I’m always looking for the next challenge. The hardest part of my job is balancing my personal interests and my professional responsibilities. I’m always looking for new and interesting places to get into the manga business. There’s a great manga artist in New Zealand who I talk to all the time who says something along the lines of “Manga isn’t about drawing, it’s about writing.” If I had to describe my work as art, that’s what it would mean. My job is to create a manga that doesn’t suck: it doesn’t only suck for the sake of it. It sucks for the sake of making it the best that it can be, even if it doesn’t feel like that right now.
Can you provide more information on the characters that feature in your work?
Characters that I draw usually have something about them that’s quite interesting, even if it’s just a few lines of dialogue, and then for the most part the rest follows their actions and dialogue in some way. Like it or not, it takes a great deal of commitment to have characters that aren’t just going into your head and trying to be funny, but are actually thought-out, realistic characters. If I have any particular characters that I want to work on more, that’s just because their story lines are the ones I like to explore, and in particular when it comes to the more dramatic, serious ones.
Is there anything you would like to say to the world of Manga?
Well, it’s not like you can go into manga and decide that it’s not for you… It’s just a hobby, so why should you ever go into it with a preconceived idea of what it
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