Thursday, March 10, 2011

[Un]Discovers: IC4DESIGN

I still remembered when I first came across the illustration works produced by IC4DESIGN, my jaw dropped because of the amazing details on the images. Back then, it was always a dream for me to have an interview with this group, which consists of Hirofumi Kamigaki and Daisuke Matsubara. I can finally put a check mark on my "people I want to interview" list since on today's [Un]Discovers, I am proudly presenting you my interview with Hirofumi Kamigaki!

Hello Hiro, I am so honored to be able to interview you today. Please tell me, how did you form IC4DESIGN? What does the company's name mean?
I used to work for an ad agency, but unfortunately the company was not generating a lot of revenue so I couldn't afford to pay my apartment mortgage just with my salary. In the end, I decided to start my own company. At first, I was established as a freelance designer and later, my designer mate offered me an illustration job and since then I  have become a half- illustrator and half-designer.

When I needed to create a name for my company, I prefer the sound of the words over the meaning. I wanted it to be sounded like a band (Like "MC5","MC4") name so in the end I decided to use"IC4" (and there was only 1 person at that time). Now with Daisuke working with me, we have become "IC4DESIGN".

I am liking the name of your company and yes, it does sounds like a very trendy band name. Your works are amazing and I would love to know what are your inspirations?
My inspiration is simple. It is desire which includes the place I want to go or live in and the things I want. If I find a nice house while I'm walking on the street, I will feel like I want to live there, and I will express that desire on my illustrations.

I am also influenced by city, movies, paintings, photos, illustrations by other illustrators, designs, clothes, and personal belongings.

I'm interested in many things, I would like have as many different experiences in my life as possible. I am glad I have illustration as my expressive medium so I can express my wishes in art forms.

I always think those people whom can transform their visions/wants into different art forms are very gifted!  So, what words will be best to describe your illustration style?
FUN! Since I am always drawing with with enjoyment, I want to share that feeling with the others whom look at my works. Back in junior high, I wanted to be a film director or manga artist there are always stories to tell and they can let me express my world-view. Since I want people to understand my world-view, I try to explain that by drawing a lot of details in my works.

I have to say, the details on your works are what attracted me the most and please keep doing it! Out of all the works you have done since 1998, which project is the most memorable? Why?
It has to be the National Train Day project. Since we live in Hiroshima, we have never imagined we could do a BIG job like this without leaving our hometown and got our work showcased all over USA. We were one of the chosen groups to participate in this competition and we were really excited when we received the info-email. Trust me, at that point, We thought This might be life-changing opportunity!

During the 2 weeks, we worked very hard to creaate the best work for this competition and we even needed to work all night on some of the days. In the end, we did win the competition but if you asked did our life change, I will have to tell you, unfortunately not so much, yet. However, because of this experience, our view on life has changed. Now I will always tell myself and Daisuke that "There is no future, if we don't keep trying harder!"

You and Daisuke have done an amazing job on the poster and trust me, more great opportunities will for sure show up in the future! Well, I know that every artist has a set of tools (music, snacks, figures etc) to help them to work or keep him/her inspire, what are your must have items when you work?
I have this information digital packet (sorted into the folders) which consists of mainly 1900's-1970's old photos, diorama photos, old paintings, and illustrations of other artists. This packet is stored on my iphone and ipad so when I have time (usually at a cafe), I will take a look at it to give me ideas and inspirations.

One day, I would love to see your digital packet! Lat but not least, if you could collaborate with another illustrator for a project, who would that be? Also, what kind of projects would you love to do in the future?
It will be Yan Nascimbene since we would like to learn more from him.
In the future, We would like to do more challenging projects than what we are doing now. The projects include advertisment, editorial, fashion, and more. In the end, we hope we could be a Fine-artist.

It's time for some trivia questions to learn more about Hiro as a person!

Sun or Moon?
About me, Sun. Always feel attracted to Moon.

Coffee or Tea?
I drink lots of coffee everyday, but if there is only one choice in my whole life, I'll choose Tea.

Youtube or TV?
If I am alone, I will watch youtube, but if I am in a group, I prefer TV.

Wii or PS3?
Playing with everybody = Wii, Playing alone = PS3.

Tokyo or Hiroshima?
Until now, All talents in japan, got together to Tokyo.
From now, We would like to prove we could work internationally, without leaving Hiroshima.

Salmon or Tuna?
I want to eat Tuna.
I want to draw Salmon.

Mickey Mouse or Waldo?
Since I like to draw world view, my choice will be Waldo. Mickey Mouse will be good for portrait.

Goldfish or Clownfish?
I like beautiful environment that Clownfish live in.

M-flo or Exile?
I don't get what M-flo is, Because They always do too many collaborate.
Exile has clear attitude, however they have too many members.
But... I am attracted to M-flo.

PC or Mac?
PC=work, Mac=play
I'm working with Mac.

Once again, thank you so much to Hiro for giving me this opportunity to ask him some questions and I am very honored to be able to share this interview with you readers. If you want to see more of IC4DESIGN works, please click here. All images are courtesy of IC4DESIGN.

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