Toshio Maeda Interview Part 2
We pick up where we left last time,,, this time Toshio tells us about his horrific road accident, women’s sex fantasy requests and BOOK OFF!
Toshio: In the end I faced the music after the car accident.
David Sausage: How did that car accident change you physically?
Toshio: Well you know I couldn’t move my right arm for four years. I just had the right hand and the shoulder blades and legs fractured so my right side completely went numb. I told my bankers the truth: I wouldn’t be able to move my arm for four years… I wouldn’t be able to work anymore… For four or five years so… They took action.
David Sausage: Did they help you?
Toshio: They took all my assets and then,,, my wife,, my ex wife, left me.
David Sausage: She left?! Because of the money?
Toshio: Of course, because of the money.
David Sausage: Because of the money…?!! That’s cold!
Toshio: No no no no no no,,,!!! It was the happiest day,,, of my life!
Toshio: You know, because I didn’t like that hideous hag so you know I said Ohkaaaaaay! :-))))) I just went back to scratch from there. Its nothing,,, I couldn’t complain.
David Sausage: That’s wise looking at the good side of any situation.
Toshio: Yes! The glass is half full. You know life is full of happiness, I’m optimistic yeah? The sea is full of fish all the time you know? It’s nothing so, I remarried last year I’m a newly wed man!
YEAH! (High Fives)
Toshio: That the way it is. Life is yknow really full of happiness. Even if you have a little blip or bump,,, it’s nothing! It’s OK.
David Sausage: How did you feel straight after the accident when you opened your eyes?
Toshio: I thought my life had ended. You cant even twitch your right hand. I really had a hard time with physiotherapy. Yeahhh, it was really a kind of torture you know I tied up my right hand and using my left… And the exercise every single day,, eight or nine hours a day. I took pills you know, painkillers because it was too painful… Ahhh… But you know! It’s nothing!
It’s nothing compared to my assistant days.
INKFETISH: What happened? How did the accident happen?
Toshio: I was trying to change lanes and you know the truck,,, tried to change the lanes too before me so the scooter collided into the side of the truck and the rear tire run over me,,, four tonne truck ran over me,, this side here (right side)
And you know, the most scary moment was, when i was laying down on the street and the truck driver was talking to another driver and he was asking… (if) it was my fault… And I was one meter in front if him on the floor… And I was thinking “,,,why? Because I’m going to die?”
INKFETISH: Yeah god…
Toshio: Yeah because he didn’t give a shit my listening to him. He asking out loud “please, this supposed to be HIS fault” so I tried to move my toe or neck because you really care about your spinal chord so you know you could be the SUPERMAN you the,,, actor,,, Christopher Reeve ,,, you know neck-down paralysed right? You know he just passed away a couple of years ago,,, several years ago,,, like that I would be I was really worried about that so I could feel sharp pain around my toe… WOW! I could be recovered!
INKFETISH: I bet pain never felt so good!
Toshio: Yeah yeah yeah! I was really gratified with that and sooner or later I could be fine.
David Sausage: After that I heard you continued working with the help of an assistant?
Toshio: Yeah after that I almost couldn’t do my work so I continued to hire my assistant to run errands for me because I’m kind of disabled you know.
David Sausage: And I read there’s a whole area of manga made exclusively for women and you afterwards you became involved in that?
Toshio: Yeah, I became involved not as an artist but as a writer for, how can I say?,,, girls manga you know the manga for females. It’s supposed to be erotic and they read it after their work so I was writing the scenario for another manga artist…. Lady’s comic for ladies, only horny ladies read it so you know,,, nasty story,,,
You know I get fan letters from the readers and they want nasty nasty nasty in the details,,, how the captors want to have a shag with this or that you know,,, SO many requests I got from women, real ladies and they are so greedy in the details they are really fussy on the details but men, on the other hand they are more ambiguous,, “more nasty scenes please”
David Sausage: So what you’re saying is women are looking for more dark, more perverted, more specific details and things in their requests?
Toshio: Yeah yeah yeah! They want crotchless panties and double dildos and for things like that, yeah!
Toshio: (Laughs) yeah so, you know really greedy,,, about everything. I learned a lot from direct message from readers.
David Sausage: When you made Urotsukidoji, I know there’s a big Market for that in Japan and..
David Sausage: Ahhh…
Toshio: No, I’m afraid not.
INKFETISH: Not anymore…?
Toshio: Not now. At that time, yeah.
David Sausage: Erm… Okay…
Toshio: Actually, it seems like manga is booming. It’s not. In those days it was A-OK but now,,, WOW! You know so many of my acquaintances quit and went back to their hometown to become farmers, or security guards and traffic directors. Many manga artists are disappointed with the situation right now you know.
David Sausage: How would you like to see that change? What’s the problem?
Toshio: It’s a little complicated. You speak to distributers about the books and they’ve changed their system. You know it’s hard to explain but in the beginning when the small publishers printed you know 20,000 copies, the distributor give you money for that.
David Sausage: As an advance right?
Toshio: Yup, but now it’s pay for what you sell. So yknow in the beginning the publisher print a lot because you know,,, they need the money,,, so you get the unsold book back they had to give money back to the distributor so they made more and more and more each month. Vicious circle like that. All of a sudden the distributor changed the system and they couldn’t have money back from the distributor so the system is different now. Plus, nowadays there are the copies, a lot.
David Sausage: Youre taking about the Internet and piracy?
Toshio: Yeah they are carrying the manga illegally you know and uploading to the website and you read. Plus, there’s a shop called BOOK OFF
David Sausage: My favourite shop!
INKFETISH: I’ve never heard about it…
Toshio: You know, once you sell the book and another reader could buy it, and after they read it, they can sell it
INKFETISH: it’s like that place I visited earlier… Ah what’s the name nak… The one that you mentioned the other day.. Naka.. Sun
David Sausage: in Nakano Broadway? Mandarake?
INKFETISH: that place,, the whole three floors,,,
David Sausage: INKFETISH what he’s talking about is BOOK OFF which is like this massive chain and you can find all over Japan. You take in a box of your old used books and novels and trade them all in.
Toshio: You know now we are in the middle of a phase between the printed and the digital. But you know, this kind of manga not so many people could read so we are stuck in the middle of nowhere… behind the 8 ball you know. Yeah! Like that, where we should go? With just manga and some artists are just so old to change their habit or learn a new style, to learn the new technology. I’m one of them. I’ve really struggled hard to adjust to the new style but I can’t… This new kind of culture.
David Sausage: I don’t think you missing anything too important.
INKFETISH: He is on twitter though.
David Sausage: I guess that kind of improves some things. This is how I met you and INKFETISH today for the first time. I’ve heard people complaining about how things were simpler and easier before the Internet but it means people get connected a lot more and you meet lots of interesting people like you guys. So, it’s got it’s good side.
Toshio: Yeah but you know, I don’t believe in Cyberspace. We should meet face to face, in the end, otherwise we can’t build the trust circle don’t you think?
David Sausage: Yeah absolutely
Toshio: Because you know you can’t see the face,,, I mean if course we can see the face the face on the screen but I mean the real face
David Sausage: Yes, face to face.
Toshio: Yeah that’s always needed.
I was flippin through Flickr a while back when some crazy trippy erotic cut and paste collage art jobby flew out from the screen. After wipiNg myself off and *ahem* inspecting the author of these,,, outrages, I came across Ichasu!
A like-minded pant rat to swap images with? No!!!
A nasty graffiti thug man-coward who objectifies women with his cut and paste? No!!!
Actually, a 22 year old university art lecturer! A lecturer! Fun, funky, fresh and guess what?…
FEMALE! OMG! OMG! OMG!
I immediately clammed up… meeting Ichasu, a woman, for the first time always does that tttttto little David Sausage. Women. Ive always found it so difficult to hold conversation with them. Mysterious creatures… With their,,, breasts. I was rocking in my chair chewing my knuckles hard as she came in… But wow with Ichasu, straight away we could talk international Eros until the cows came home! I talked and talked and walked her to the Tokyo graffiti shop and after giving her a crash course in can selection, we had more talk. I really talked to her. Now that I’ve actually talked to a woman about naked women without offending her in real-time, real-life I’m going to tell you all about it on my blog in cyber-space,,, where we can hide,,, behind a pseudonym,,, uh,,, look
1) Where does yourname Ichasu come from? "ICHASU"は、本名を省略したものです。 2) How did you come to love drawing, cutting and pasting, painting and creating so much? 部屋で寝転がって手が届くものを切って貼って描いてつくっています。 そうしたら変なものが出来たりして、面白くなって続けています。 コラージュを多くやっていましたが、今はイラストや漫画を描いています。気まぐれに色んな方法を使って、 可愛いものとか変なものを表現していくつもりです。 つくること全部好きです。 3) You have a lot of erotic content in your work! It's unusual for a girl to include so much in her work. It's cool, we love Eros here at chottomatte! When did you start putting erotic things in your work? What's the reaction from people? 2009年くらいから。 日本の古いエロ本(1970～80年代頃)などを使ってコラージュしています。 エロくないエロ本をつくるためのアートワークです。露骨なエロより少しずれたような、必ずしも男性向けでないようなものがつくりたい。 周りの大人は苦笑していました…ショック！！ 4) Tell us about your cool new zine. Where can we buy it? zineはほとんど作っていません。少し前に"completburger"に参加させていただきました。 http://www.flickr.com/photos/arcoiris_testicular/5258251317 漫画を一冊つくりました。http://www.flickr.com/photos/ichasu/5547068342 日本のトラッシュ・カルチャー雑誌"TRASH-UP!!"のvol.10に漫画が載る予定！http://www.trash-up.com/ 5) What are your plans for the future?
You can see Ichasu’s portfolio here: http://jp.flavors.me/ichasu
*English translation to follow*