Creator Interview: Cucie

Creator Interview: Cucie

Recently, we interviewed TOM Special Creator Cucie, whose art is cute and slightly surreal. Read on for the interview!

Creator Introduction
Name: Cucie
Creator’s MyPage:

TOM: How long have you been drawing for?
Cucie: Since long ago I have enjoyed the illustrations in strategy guides for games, and I would draw weapons and things. I started seriously drawing when I was in high school. I had friends in class who were drawing a manga about school things and using our classmates as the cast of characters (laughs). At that time, it started with the thought, “I too want to try drawing something.”

TOM: Was there something that made you aim for becoming a full-blown illustrator?
Cucie: Although the only thing I was into up until then was games, when I was a third year student in high school, I became enthusiastic about drawing pictures. My thoughts swelled that if drawing was this much fun, I would like to make a career out of it, so I went to a specialty college for illustrators.

TOM: Did you become a freelance illustrator as soon as you graduated from college?
Cucie: After studying at the specialty college for two years, I went to work as a designer in the PR department of a company. However, I suffered a physical condition and had to quit very early on. After my health was restored, I attended Design Festa (*1) and other events, and while continuing my life as an artist, I reached the point where I was receiving work.

TOM: Is your illustration style the same now as it was then?
Cucie: Yes. From the time after I graduated from the specialty college, I have drawn illustrations of girls using Adobe Illustrator. What I learned while attending the specialty college - such as how girls use makeup, their clothes, female culture, and more - has had a big influence on my current illustration style.

TOM: Guitars are depicted in many of your works to the extent that we think they are characteristic of them. Are their certain feelings you have toward guitars?
Cucie: I like the form and silhouette of guitars. This work (“Dragon Accompaniment”) is done in the motif of the Japanese guitar maker, Firstman. Because they are called bizarre guitars, I think their slightly different silhouettes are cool and stylish. Guitars, on the one hand, have an unreliableness due to considerable tuning. However, they also have a powerful side in that they can make people’s hearts tremble when they are played live. I express the amplified power of those types of guitars in the hands of girls. Also, this doesn’t just apply to guitars, but I bear in mind the meaning that is held by the things that I draw.

TOM: This work (“Thinker”) is complex and finely detailed. What kind of meaning did you put into this?
Cucie: I was requested to theme it around a derivative work, and it was an illustration I drew for use on a school’s brochure. I expressed this in a way that while it is wrapped in content from a derivative work, the viewer would think about the way in which the two girls surrounded by eggs and baby birds fit into being a derivative work.

Furthermore, at the point when the baby birds mature and take flight, I expressed the content of a derivative work as something similar to us reaching our origin. I remember that this piece took me two weeks of constant work and trouble to draw.

TOM: Creating work takes a lot of energy, doesn’t it? What is your motivation?
Cucie: I think that normal boys long to be a guitar hero on TV, but I, in the same way as a normal girl, long to be a “cute girl.” My motivation is drawing the image of girls I long to be like to satisfy this desire. There are also boys in my art, but I focus on girls, and this is what I would like people to see through my illustrations.

My work is often misunderstood as having been drawn by a girl, and in that moment, I am able to feel like I am a girl, and I enjoy that. I am a male, but every day through my drawings, in order to appeal to “cute,” I implicitly remind myself, “It’s okay for girls to meekly appeal to “cute” even more!”

TOM: What kind of girls do you want to draw next?
Cucie: There are many girls who draw cute illustrations. I want to try throwing one stone at drawing pictures that have a cuteness that “can’t come from a girl, but can come from me because I am a male.”

For example, while many of my illustrations could basically be called girly, it’s been pointed out that the hands of the girls I draw are manly. They are bony, short, and powerful. I think that “manliness” that unintentionally comes out is interesting if it’s left that way.

Also, I am considering the various things that are included in the component of “cute.” For example, it being also included in the word “cool.” Furthermore, don’t older men have a cuteness unique to them and animals a cuteness unique to them? I expect that there is still much about “cute” that I don’t know, so I want to pursue what “cute” is.

Check out our picture collection of the talented Cucie, and don’t forget to SUKI him! Keep it here for even more interviews with some of the most prominent creators in the otaku world!

(*1) A doujinshi event in Japan that deals with strong, original works in art and design.

Creator’s MyPage:

"Coil Cupid"
"Coil Cupid"
"Bezier Eater"
"Bezier Eater"
"Dragon Accompaniment" - themed around bizarre guitars
"Dragon Accompaniment" - themed around bizarre guitars
"Thinker" - drawn in the theme of a "derivative work"
"Thinker" - drawn in the theme of a "derivative work"
Creator Interview: Cucie 6
Creator Interview: Cucie 7
Creator Interview: Cucie 8
Creator Interview: Cucie 9
Creator Interview: Cucie 10
Creator Interview: Cucie 11
Creator Interview: Cucie 12
Creator Interview: Cucie 13

These are your people. Join the TOM Fan Club to meet more fun, friendly otaku: