Dynamism in an illustration – Bird’s-eye story by Yutaka Sugawara

Creating his own world of hamsters and birds, the Japanese illustrator and designer Yutaka Sugawara flexes his talent muscles to deliver drop-dead gorgeous concept art. The recurring characters are two hamsters: eMon and Horseradish, together with a bird holding a brush called Painter.B. eMon is portrayed as an artist, Horseradish as a gentleman, and Painter.B a fierce birdie.


Needless to say how outrageously talented Yutaka is. His skills in controlling light, texture, and space are immaculate. Usually with character design, you’ll see the characters drawn from front view or side view. But with Yutaka, he went on experimenting with a lot more difficult angles, including the tricky top view.

To pull this off, one has to master perspectives, the character’s volume and shape, and most of all, lighting. Yutaka didn’t only achieve this, he exceeded it. His masterful lighting stays strong and breathes life into every little detail. The casted shadows are unbelievably well done. From the top view, the light throws shadow on every surface downward. Yutaka didn’t only capture the main shadow of each detail on the ground, but also the secondary and tertiary shadows casting and overlaying each other. Through these various nuances in shades, viewers can perceive how close or far away each component is, along with their physical appearance in the total composition.

From this odd angle, the viewers’ experience changes drastically. Viewers don’t see as many details of the characters anymore, but on the other hand, they see very clearly the stance, distance, posture, space, everything around. The overview is incredibly dynamic as if it’s a still from a movie.

Hats off to Yutaka Sugawara and the wonderful characters his fine skills have brought to us. Scroll down to see more, or you can head over to his Behance page for more of his brilliant artwork.

Details of the boy talking to eMon:

Details of the toy:

Details of Horseradish:

Details of Painter.B:

Details of the car:

Leave a Reply