The Stunning Folkloric Illustrations of Yoshitaka Amano

September 11, 2017

Yoshitaka Amano has a staggering body of work ranging from character design for Speed Racer and Final Fantasy to illustrations for Neil Gaiman's "Sandman" to a glorious oeuvre of roiling, passionately-rendered images fraught with dark magic and elegance.

Amano Yoshitaka, born March 26, 1952, is a Japanese artistcharacter designerillustrator and a theatre and film scenic designer and costume designer. He first came into prominence in the late 1960s working on the anime adaptation of Speed Racer. Amano later became the creator of iconic and influential characters such as GatchamanTekkaman: The Space KnightHutch the Honeybee and Casshan. In 1982 he went independent and became a freelance artist, finding success as an illustrator for numerous authors, and worked on best-selling novel series, such as The Guin Saga and Vampire Hunter D. He is also known for his commissioned illustrations for the popular video-game franchise Final Fantasy.

Since the 1990s Amano has been creating and exhibiting paintings featuring his iconic retro pop icons in galleries around the world, primarily painting on aluminium box panels with acrylic and automotive paint. He is a 5-time winner of the Seiun Award, and also won the 1999 Bram Stoker Award for his collaboration with Neil GaimanSandman: The Dream Hunters.

Amano's influences include early Western comic books, art nouveau, and Japanese woodblock prints. In early 2010, he established Studio Devaloka, a film production company.