Q1. What was your first experience as a professional illustrator? How did it feel to have your artwork out for the public to see?
The "Empire of the Angel" was my first commercial work when I was a sophomore in university; it was for game character design. It was my first time to work on so many illustrations for commercial purpose, and I did not think my performance was perfect , so I felt kind of embarrassed when I saw the products in the stores.
What is your earliest memory of your affinity for art? Who has influenced your artwork?
I was inspired by Japanese Godzilla movies when I was a kid. I drew lot images of Godzilla, monsters, and Gundam. Later, I started working on robot images when I was a student in elementary school and junior high, but it was in a quite different style compared with my current artwork.
The reason I started drawing female characters was because I saw Masaki Takei's artwork "Dokyuse 2" when I was a teenager. I was so astonish ed by the attracti ve composition of his female characters. Before seeing Masaki Takei's artwork, I was crazy over robot and science fiction illustration . Though now my style is not as the same as Masaki Takei, he did influence my "tender" or "soft" painting style.
Q3. How is creating game character illustraions different from drawing illustrations for magazines? Basically the same?
You want to create a vivid personality for game character design, in the colors and character’s accessories. For commercial purposes, I will put more effort on the uniqueness and accessories of the game characters.
And for the illustrations for magazines or novels, I prefer to create an image that incorporates the story. Also, the characters will be friendlier, so readers will feel comfortable with them. I do not emphasis the personality and uniqueness of story characters. I would rather let the image to tell the story.
Q4. Do you usually decide not only character's appearances but also personal info (personality, age, family member, hobbies etc...)? If so, how do you deeply decide details? Do you use models?
Well, let's talk about this topic in 2 ways; one is commercial
projects, another one is illustrations for stories. For commercial cases, I
will define character's background info in detail. It is good for a long-term
work, so I won't make a character with different personalities.
If working on story images, I pretty much rely on my instincts. The character
should be designed for the story image, so I create the character to fit in
the background. I do not create the character first, and then create the background
for him or her. For example, if I need to create an image of a snowy day, I
will think about the harmony of whole image. So, I will draw a long-haired
female which is wearing a summer dress and lying down in the snow. At this
moment, the detail of this character is not important any more. The reader
will get the nuances from the image itself.
Q5. Which Wacom product do you use for your work? When do you use it most?
My very first tablet is a Wacom Intuos 6x8 which was bought in 1999, then got an Intuos2 9x12 after 3 years. Now I am using an Intuos3 6x8. I bought this Intuos3 right after it launched in Taiwan. I think I could be one of the very first few users of Intuos3 in Taiwan. Now both the Intuos and Intuos2 still work well and my family uses them for photo retouching.
Q6. You were invited to speak at AsiaGraph
2008 in Tokyo. What did you talk about? Some very talented
illustrators from Asia (Korea, Singapore, Thailand etc...)
participated in this event. Did you have a chance to talk
AsiaGraph was quite an interesting event, like the Siggraph in Europe and America, but with more of an Asian flavor. The most different part was that AsiaGraph focused on 2D images instead of 3D technology as Europe and America. As a speaker at AsiaGraph 2008, I mainly talked about the creative experience in Taiwan and had a 20-min. live demo with a Wacom Cintiq 21UX. I also met many illustrators from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Hong Kong and Japan; they were all very friendly. I also met some famous illustrators who I knew about from the web; that was quite an exciting experience.
VOFAN gives a live demo at AsiaGraph 2008 on a Wacom Cintiq 21UX.
Q7. Tell us about 夜貓館咖啡屋? I think this is unique and cute name! If it's translated into English, would it be “Night cat in a coffee shop?"
If 夜貓館咖啡屋 was pronounced in English, it
should be "Ya-myou-kan" cafe. It is a group including illustrators,
cartoonists, designers, novel writers, experimental musicians,
event planners. Each person has his or her own job, but supports
each other when there is an event. The major events are seminars,
lecturers, live demos, art exhibitions, and other events
related to creative arts.
Q8. Who are your favorite artists recently? Who do you want to work with?
Illustrator OKAMA, photographer Rinko Kawauchi, photographer Kobayashi Shinichiro, photographer Gregory Crewdson—I like some of their artwork.
Q9. What are your dreams?
My dream is to be a pro photographer, but I need to complete all my illustration works on hand. So it is kind difficult to make my dream come true at this moment.
Q10. Any messages for your fans and young
illustrators who aspire to be like you? Also, if
you're planning any upcoming events, please tell us about
Never limit your interest only on illustration.
It is not good enough if you only focus on the skills. Good
skill can not make you better than other artists.
Skill is not the only key successful factor for an illustrator. If you have lots
of hobbies and interests, then you can have your artwork
incorporate different aspects. It will make your art really
different from other people's creations.
About upcoming events, I may have 2 illustration books published in 2009. And
a novel which I co-worked for illustrations will become an
animation. You will see them soon!
2000 - Game character design - " 新天使帝國 " (PC game)
2002 - Illustration on the "Frontier 開拓動漫畫情報誌 " (monthly magazine)
2004 - Cover illustation appear serially on FAMITSU 電玩通 （ weekly game magazine , Ching-Win Publishing ), Illustration and poetry, "Colorful Dreams" appear serially on 月刊挑戦者 (monthly magazine , Maxpower Publishing )