At the Singapore Toy Games & Comic Convention, Ani-Culture was honored to conduct an interview with one of the guests, Shigeto Koyama-san. An active designer in Japan’s media industry known for his mechanic and character designs.


(C) Singapore Toy Game & Comic Convention STGCC 2015

Some of his notable works are HEROMAN, Star Driver, Kill la Kill and many more.

Below here are some of the questions that were asked during the interview session.

Why have you chosen this to be your career?

It was in when I was in my 20s, I used to be a freeter and did a lot of odd jobs to get by simply because I did not know what I want to do. I took up illustration for a while, but that did not suit me so much. Later, Sadamoto-san invited me to work on animation which I found out which fits me.

In a studio, you have to work with a lot of people. How do you make sure that the work flows in the direction you want?

Well, working in a team is like making friends. You have to trust them and know what they are doing like their style of work, for example, so that you can have an image of the end product before it gets completed.

Some designers work at home while others work in studios. Which do you prefer?

Personally I feel it is the same for both but working in the studio means you can get work completed fast as the documents will be processed to various departments more efficiently.

What are some of the problems you have faced when working on a project and how do you overcome them?

I used to be very weak in creating mecha designs. When I was working on the project for Gunbuster 2: Diebuster, I had problems with drawing mecha. So Tsurumaki-san, the director, made me draw mecha for 4 months and that was how I overcome my weakness in doing mecha design.

When you are not working on any projects, what do you like to do, do you have any hobbies?

I have to eat. Sometimes I would take my car and drive to the next city to try out the food there.

Have you tried any Singapore dishes here?

I find Singapore dishes to be very tasty like the Chilli Crab. I also tried the chicken rice, but that was when I was back in Japan.

How do you feel about STGCC, an event where western and eastern comes together in a single convention?

I feel that is a very interesting event. I really wish that this kind of event can be held in Japan also. I really like the western comics, games and toy a lot and I feel that this kind of event is meant for me. I also really want to buy the toys at this event too.

Below are some of the interesting questions asked on stage as well!

How did the whole collaboration with Disney start?

The director of Big Hero 6 bought one of my toys while he was in Japan. He really liked it so he contacted me out for a meal and the rest is history.

What is it like working with Disney Studios?

Generally we mostly work on skype with the other designers and animators on the project. Working with them has been very fun as they are mostly childlike and very playful. One of them was actually the one who suggested to me about the idea for the rocket punch as its something commonly seen in Japanese mecha.

Between the guys from Gainax and Disney, who is crazier?

During the development of Kill La Kill, most of the meetings we had been like kindergartens. Animators and designers would bring in their toys to play while discussing design work and when we are done playing, we would go online and buy more toys. We spend about 2K USD every month on toys from all around the world! Kill La Kills director is a huge Hulk fan and would buy many of their toys. We did our own drawings of Hulk as well. All these help manage the amount of stress we are facing in development.

That’s all we have for Shigeto Koyama, stay tune for more from !

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