At AniManGaki 2022, Here Be Geeks had the privilege to interview several guest stars — mangaka Shirahama Kamome, AniSong performer MindaRyn, comic artist RandoWis, and art YouTuber Emirichu!
These is what they had to share:
What is the biggest difference between being a mangaka vs being an illustrator?
I’ve been an illustrator throughout my life. I used to draw manga in high school so making manga felt natural and wasn’t a large shift for me personally.
Within Enidewi (Eniale & Dewiela), what aspect of their relationship with fashion did you enjoy illustrating the most?
It’s commonplace for many manga characters to wear the same thing in every panel, so it was my selfish desire to have them change clothes from time to time.
You’ve accomplished so much, what challenges are you looking forward to next?
I recently worked on the Star Wars animated series and I was very excited to work with them. I would be interested in a job with animation, but first I’d like to do my best and finish up Witch Hat Atelier first.
What is the hardest part of the recording process for you?
After becoming a professional AniSong singer, I felt more pressured. Everyone in Japan works really hard, and it feels lonely. I also feel a sense of imposter syndrome — that no matter how hard I try, it’s never enough. Self-talk is what I do to encourage myself whenever I will this way.
In your opinion, what would you say is the most necessary mindset for this profession?
Now or never! It’s better to just do it now, than to wait until the right time.
How did you feel when your song ‘Like Flames’ was featured in the anime That Time I Got Reincarnated As A Slime?
I felt great as it was a dream of mine to have a song in an anime. When it first came out, I couldn’t believe it — this was really going to happen! I cried with my manager when the news was announced.
Where did the name RandoWis come from?
Before I started as RandoWis, the name I gave my series of comics was Random Wisdom. Back then, it was for my group of classmates back in animation school. So I would post random comics making fun of other students and teachers in a private Facebook group.
It was known as Random Comics but it felt too short for me, so I stuck with “wisdom” as it rhymed with “random”. This name doesn’t have any significant meaning. When I started publishing publicly, I felt “Random Wisdom” was too long, and thus shortened it to “RandoWis.”
What are your sources of inspiration? Do you draw more from Western or Eastern media?
I take inspiration from anything that looks good and interesting. It honestly doesn’t even have to be from the media — I read, listen to music, take walks, and listen to nature. Sometimes I just look up at the clouds and an idea pops up.
What is the process like for creating your comics? What do you work on first?
I draft the idea out on a piece of paper first — for the short comics, it’s to get the punchline right within four panels. For the MMO-comic (We Live In An M.M.O?!), I draft all 22-30 pages to see if the story flows and if the text boxes are appropriately placed.
I’m self taught when it comes to making manga, so what I’ve learnt is from observing other mangas that I read; I try to replicate what I think is good.
What made you decide to start VTubing?
It was a really spontaneous decision back when the VTuber boom first started happening. I was admiring from afar, “Look at all these cute designs coming out! This is so cool, but I’m gonna stay in my lane and do YouTube.”
Streaming has always been something I’m curious about, but I was never really gung-ho about it. I thought the concept of getting to stream as a cute, toony character was really cool. Then one day, one of my favourite artists opened up [VTuber] model commissions. It was an extremely spontaneous decision. If I got a model done, I wanted her to do it since I’ve admired her art for so long.
I spent a week thinking about the concept, and then I started streaming just for fun!
What your proudest achievement so far in your entire career?
The obvious one would probably be me doing YouTube and it went pretty far. But that’s too general — if I really had to pick a specific moment where I went, “Woah, I made it!” it would be when I first got the email inviting me to VidCon in 2019.
When creating a piece of content, what do you struggle with the most?
Probably storyboarding, because it takes up so much mental energy. The way I do my videos is that I make my script, and then I’ll record the audio before storyboarding the exact illustrations I want to use.
Sketching is the most tedious part because I have to brainstorm as to what I want to draw in each frame, and at the same time since it’s the sketch part — it feels like I’m not making any progress as this isn’t the final product.
I had an absolute blast talking to all of every single one of the guests at AniManGaki 2022 — there was so much to learn from their experiences. I was very humbled by their candidness in sharing their stories with us.