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Heisuke Kitazawa

Heisuke Kitazawa is an Illustrator born in Yokahama and based in Tokyo. He started his career after staying in the US for 16 years. Kitazawa's illustrations are featured internationally in various media such as magazines, product packages, and campaign visuals. website

We got the chance to have him create the "What's Copic?" presentation video for our official page in December 2018. Today he will tell us about his experience using Copic for our presentation video.

The main illustration of our video introduction is based on the "Copic shiritori" motif.

First of all, thank you so much for making such an attractive illustration for us. What is the theme behind this drawing?
I choose the theme of "shiritori*" for this drawing to use the most comprehensive color palette possible since it was my first time using Copic. I appreciated the wide selection of shades and the slight difference between the colors that Copic provided.

*Shiritori: A Japanese traditional chain word game. The player must say a word using the last syllable used by the previous player. The game continues until one of the players says a word that ends in "n"(there aren't any words starting with n syllable in Japanese).  Example: pear→radio→orange etc.

So, it's your first time using Copic. What tools do you usually use for creating your artwork?
I used only digital tools at the start of my career. One day, after visiting another artist’s exhibition, I thought it would be nice to see analog drawings for the people coming to the gallery. I started to use color inks since then and differentiate analog and digital mediums based on the occasion.

"I use solid colors in some parts of the illustration because the Copic ink itself is so pretty. I layered the colors focusing on creating blurs to recreate the fruit and the plant's textures."

How was it trying Copic for the first time?
It was so good to be able to use the same color whenever you want. When using color inks, the color changes by mixing them with water, so it's hard to make an artwork series since the color changes over time. Copic markers are so easy to use, and I love that even faint colors such as Y000 and Y00 have a distinct difference.

I'm glad to hear you find our color palette to be attractive. Is there anything else that made you think Copic is easy to use?
I thought it was so handy that it's possible to correct the drawing by layering the colors if you start with light colors, and the tones don't get duller by mixing.

Where do you get inspiration from your thrilling artworks?
I love to hear music while working, so my drawings were influenced by the songs I heard at that time. For example, the illustration made for the Copic presentation video was influenced by the new bubbling Tahiti 80 album.

Is there any color that catches your eyes in the extensive Copic color selection?
My favorite colors are the RV Color family group extensively used on the cherry blossoms in the illustration. I also love the fluorescent colors, the FYR tone in particular, because it doesn't stand out too much even if it's a bright color. I'm also fond of Y04 since it's rare to have such bright, pure yellows in color inks.

The impossibility of fixing drawings is the stereotype of analog coloring, so I'm glad to hear that Copic markers were useful for you.
It was such a fun experience to use Copic. You feel like a pro when using them, and it was so fun to use them thanks to the wide selection of tones.

Kitazawa prepared this line art for us. Enjoy coloring his cute drawings with Copic.

What is Copic?

Mr.Heisuke prepared a work in progress video of the Copic Shiritori illustration. Take a peek at his video!

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