Taiyo Matsumoto on Storymaking

(on the right, always in hat)

This interview‘s been floating around in my ‘must blog’ list for too long.  Taiyo Matsumoto talking about his latest manga, Sunny, and the various ways his mind/his practice works.  I’ve snatched out two sections that struck me as particularly revealing.  Not in a ‘OH so THAT’S how you write a story!’ way, but in a ‘what a beautiful human, look at him through his work’ kind of way:

‘Matsumoto works at what’s considered a steady clip, and says he always starts with the artwork before the story. His settings and many of his establishment shots in “Sunny” appear to be single thoughts, and stories often build into the background through secondary dialogue. He works for the most part without assistants, though his wife, the artist and manga illustrator Saho Tono, helps in prepping and coloring while occasionally giving editorial guidance.’

I’d like to give a little more credence to my sketchbook scrawling; pick up on characters that materialise out of no direct purpose and develop an idea from there.  I imagine it as a method of storytelling that speaks quite directly to emotions, the main focus being the atmosphere of a particular scene.

‘“I knew each character was based on someone, but I couldn’t attribute anyone’s behavior (to anyone specific),” he claims. “And I couldn’t avoid making them all me.”’

This is a perfect summary of engaged character-creation/design.

I haven’t read Sunny just yet, but now the dissertation is behind us, it is an important feature in the stack of literature I’ve built up as a treat for finishing.  I’ll be blogging about them on here then, hopefully along with gradual development of my own work (whatever it may be).


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