Roads and Sideways of Yuko Shimizu

I peri­od­ic­ally find works of this illus­trator in depths of the inter­net, so I decided to look closer and share them with you. With Yuko Shimizu I instantly felt the atmo­sphere, sym­bols and even color schemes which are typ­ical to con­tem­por­ary Japan illus­trat­ors. I was mis­taken only about one thing.

Yuko found most of her cre­at­ive free­dom and inspir­a­tion in USA. When she came back to Japan in 80’s she couldn’t adapt to “their” cul­ture. Now she lives in USA, keeps receiv­ing awards again and again, and, as she says, is not miss­ing her home­land at all.

After search­ing for the answer to the ques­tion why her work is so much “Japanese-​like”, even though she doesn’t feel very good there, I found a straight and simple answer. Yuko was draw­ing since she could hold a crayon in her hand. This is when the exclus­ive man­ner and region-​specific ways of expres­sion of the Eastern world have shaped her style. The artist has been try­ing to deny this influ­ence in her artistic explor­a­tions many times, she has tried other styles, but finally she has settled with it and says that since then cre­at­ive pro­cess itself became more pleasant.

Yuko makes a liv­ing from never end­ing com­mis­sions and some­times she gives lec­tures for future artists. While grow­ing up in tra­di­tional Japanese fam­ily, she did not dare to join the stud­ies of art, so she chose the com­prom­ise and star­ted study­ing mar­ket­ing and advert­ising in the University of Waseda. After that she got into a reg­u­lar and bor­ing job in one of the Tokyo com­pan­ies, which she found very unpleas­ant. It took her another ten years to drop everything and come to USA to study illustration.

I think such per­son is a per­fect inspir­a­tion and example for young people, just like you, who have just recently star­ted their life quests.

Aleksandr Pasevin
About author:
Aleksandr Pasevin
Aleksandr Pasevin is Art Pit’s strategist and designer, responsible for organization’s creative solutions. Aleksandr is also actively interested in new technologies, their connection with creativity and usage in cultural organizations. Aleksandr dislikes long discussions and considerations, and he mostly expresses his opinion quickly about whet... Read further >
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