There’s a lot we love about animator Makoto Shinkai, whether it’s his pertinence for slow narratives or his obsession with melancholic atmospheres. But Shinkai is as much a master of creating stunning backgrounds as he is a storyteller. The Garden of Words, a short film about a lonely teenage boy and his relationship with a 27-year-old woman, is one of Shinkai’s better known films, and one of the best things about the film are all the gorgeous background shots of rainy Shinjuku. Rain is a major theme of the whole film, and Shinkai manages to turn slick streets and drenched gardens into scenes that have a life of their own.
The Garden of Words: Memories of Cinema is an art book that compiles all of Shinkai’s stunning background art for the film. At $75 a pop, it’s only recommended for hardcore fans, but we included a few images above for you to gawk at from afar. If you haven’t seen the film yet, watch the trailer.
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We live in a time where “Internet art” is now a thing, a time where “vaporwave” is becoming more than just a Tumblr trend, and gifs and midi music, relics of the ’90s Internet age, are becoming pieces of the larger web art scene. Japanese artist Kazuki Umezawa is just another name in the growing list of Internet artists, and his collages of anime eyes, web forums, and screenshots create a world that looks like the mind of the Internet. Umezawa predominately works with deconstructing anime, using favorite characters and screenshots and then combining them into a larger, newer image. The results are like what Tumblr and deviantArt would look like if they took a dump on a piece of canvas, and we mean that in a good way!
The pictures above were taken from 2014′s Empty God Core exhibit at B2OA gallery, but you can view more of his work on his sprawling portfolio. He also has a daily image page of gifs, doodles, and other random stuff to poke through.
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Terri Hawkes, who was the second voice actress for Sailor Moon in the English dub, sat down to discuss her famous alter ego that was a role model and inspiration for both girls and boys back in the ’90s. It was also a “gateway” television show that allowed children to discover the anime genre.
Hawkes muses that the best thing about Usagi Tsukino (Sailor Moon’s name) was that even though she had superpowers, she was still very much a normal human girl who was klutzy, lovable, and extremely down-to-earth. She explains how back then there was a strong need for a heroine who was strong and complex; Usagi was the gateway for powerful female characters who still kept their humanity and lived a normal life when they weren’t fighting crime.
If you grew up watching Sailor Moon then you will find Terri Hawke’s interview and insight quite enlightening.
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