Moho Featured Artist: Studio Nanahoshi
Mario Quinones @
This week our Moho Featured Artist is Studio Nanahoshi and their project "Delivery Kitten Unyan"! 🔥 The Japanese studio uses Moho as its main 2D animation software ✨
Tell us about the team
Studio Nanahoshi is a Japanese animation studio consisting of 3D animator Kodai Sato and manga artist Tomomi Kikawada. The studio was founded in 2017 with the desire to create content that inspires children to dream and nurture their imagination.
We have a unique style in which Kikawada creates animation projects in comic and picture books to delve into characters and stories before creating the scripts and storyboards for the animated films. Although we are currently a small team of five, we approach our work with a flexibility and freedom of thought that only a small group of people can provide.
Where do you get inspiration?
Since Studio Nanahoshi often creates works for children, we often refer to children's books and picture books. When we read a book, various characters begin to live in our head and start new stories on their own. Their actions overlap with our own sons and their friends, and they come alive.
For concept art, we try to find a place that fits the atmosphere as much as possible and actually go there. This is to incorporate a sense of life and the atmosphere of the place into our expression. Sometimes we refer to illustration sites such as Pinterest or Tumblr. Those illustration sites are useful for finding trendy touches and color schemes.
What’s your hardware setup?
Our work computer consists primarily of an Intel Core i7-8700 , 32GB of RAM, and an NVIDIA GeForxe GTX1660. Drawing is done on a Wacom Cintiq and story production is done on an iPad Pro.
What do you like best about Moho?
The key point is that illustrations can be rigged like 3D and can be moved freely!
With 3D, even when creating a character that looks like an illustration, we have to create a three-dimensional model and then make it look like an illustration, so a lot of time is spent on developing the look.
Since the image of the character was not finalized at the promotional video (PV) stage, we changed the look of UNYAN between the PV and the main animated film. This ability to quickly adapt to the image is another attractive aspect of Moho.
How has Moho helped you in your creative process?
We use Moho for almost all of our character animation. Before working with Moho, the most important point for us was how far we could make three-dimensional movements (such as body/head turns). When we actually started using Moho, we were able to move/rotate our characters even more than expected! Our friends in the animation industry have mistakenly thought that we were using a 3D software in the production process. Another attractive point is that it is easy to control the amount of information on movement, as some 3D software provide too much information when creating a three-dimensional object.
Can you talk about "Delivery Kitten Unyan" animation and how it is made using Moho?
We started drawing illustrations and cartoons of "Unyan" an innocent delivery kitten, on Twitter to create a work that would cheer up or relieve the viewer at the 2020 COVID-19 Disaster.
Once the image was solidified, we created the storyboards for the short animated film. We released one cut at a time so that viewers could enjoy the process of creating the work, and then we added the theme song to the completed cut and released it as a promotional video. Based on this PV, we are now making a main short film of about 6 minutes in length by raising supporters through crowdfunding. We aim to create an animation that can be enjoyed by both adults and children, focusing on Unyan as he learns "a role that could be seen not as a big deal, but is important to the character".
Would you consider Moho an industry tool?
Currently in Japan, there are not many creators producing animation using Moho, even if it provides a unique and appealing style that can only be created using the software. We believe in the full of potential of Moho supporting studios to create and explore new animation styles.
Where can we find you?