2003.7.28~2006.2.13 Page 97
I don’t intentionally put messages into my work. Or so I tell people. To be accurate, I see it more as though I don’t have the personal experience to call upon.
My conversation partner in this volume, Mr. Takashi Yanase, has lived such a long life that he was a baby when the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 happened.
He also took part in the Great War. He’s a person who actually lived through all of these historical events and periods that we only know through history class and textbooks.
So if there are people like him in this business, what can a young kid like me possibly say to the world at large? I told Mr. Yanase, “People who have experienced these things can send messages with true weight behind them. We can’t pull that off, so as an author, I feel jealous of that.” And then Mr. Yanase said, “Yes, but there are many things I’d rather not remember.”
Hmm! Yeah, leave and safety is best!
I’ve put out my fourth art book.
Thank you very much!
2005.11.14~2008.3.10 Page 191
Art and entertainment are separate things.
Art is meant to express your mind and self, while entertainment is a product created for others. I began the store of One Piece when I was 22. There was one thing I felt conflicted about when doing color work. As a matter of fact, I love muddy colors, and I really wanted to draw a super/cool, stylish piece. But I thought, “boys really like primary colors,” and I forced myself to use a bright, bold palette. Now I realize that my resistance to primary colors was because I didn’t want to be seen as childish, and I wanted adults to understand and accept me, all in some kind of vain expression, hoping to get people to understand who I was...
How very trite, I realize now. I was so young. It was nothing more than the evidence that I wasn’t an entertainer in the truest sense. I was going to allow my own personal desire for expression to muddy up Luffy’s clothes and the world he lives in. If anything, now I love bright, beautiful rainbow colors. I wonder how many colors I can squeeze into a single piece. In the fourteenth year of my manga, have I gotten any closer to being a true shonen mangaka? This is my fifth collection of color illustrations.
Thank you for all of your support!
2008.3.17~2010.11.4 Page 285
I often hear that the characters of your manga are like your children. As a manga artist, I think, Really? That important? But I’ll be honest: When I hear complaints about my characters, I’ll get a little ticked off. When they say, “This guy’s a wimp,” I started to get swayed by that opinion and think, “Fine, I’ll make him really tough!!”
When characters aren’t popular, I struggle to find ways to make them more likable. It’s like they take form somewhere between the thoughts and messages of the fans, and my response to them. So if they’re “children,” then they’re not my children alone.
Thank you for all of your support.