【Interview】COPIC AWARD 2020 Judge: Chisato Tsumori
Tsumori studied fashion design at Tokyo’s Bunka Fashion College. Since 1977, she has been working tirelessly as a designer for iconic brands like I.S. She started her own fashion line, TSUMORI CHISATO, in 1990 and has since joined the Tokyo Collection and the Paris Collection. Tsumori focuses on designing clothes that are full of creativity, and her signature ‘’fun and happy’’ style has been greatly appreciated worldwide.
TSUMORI CHISATO Official Site Instagram：tsumori_chisato_designer
She even drew the Copic logo right on the spot! Her use of colors is truly amazing.
About the COPIC AWARD
Thank you for joining our judge panel for the COPIC AWARD 2020.
Tsumori：Although I have judged fashion contests many times, this is my first-time judging illustrations or drawings done with Copic. I'm so excited about that!
Q.What kinds of entries are you looking forward to seeing?
Tsumori：Works that surprise me! I'd love to see interesting pieces showing the artists' unique personalities.
About work experience
Q.Please tell us about your childhood.
Tsumori：Given that my mother enjoyed making clothes, I really liked selecting clothes for my dolls since I was a child. Seeing this, my mother encouraged me to study clothing, and I enrolled in Bunka Fashion College (Tokyo). At the time, I would have been satisfied if I could tailor clothes, and although I knew of the work of designers, I did not think I would become one.
Q.How did you learn about fashion？
Tsumori：I learned from magazines such as Soen, Fukuso, an・an, and non-no.
Since Soen magazine covered how to draw patterns for clothes, I had been making them since I was in high school. I also learned through visiting my next-door neighbor, who attended a dressmaking school.
Q.Please tell us about what made you want to become a designer?
Tsumori：When I was studying fashion at Bunka Fashion College Tokyo, I became familiar with the work of designers and began to aspire toward becoming one when I submitted an entry to a gateway contest for young designers.
Q.How did you become a designer?
Tsumori：I joined an apparel company after graduating... and before I knew it, here I am! ‘’What one likes, one will do well!’’ Having been involved in work as a designer, I feel that it is a position that is supported by many people. Textile weavers, patterners, sewing factories, sales... I always think that it is a job for which teamwork is important.
Her shelves are filled with books from all over the world. She pulls inspiration for her design from these books.
Q.What do you like about Copic?
Tsumori：I like that the Super Brushes allow me to draw freely with a brush-like touch. It’s also nice how you can create different colors by layering. It’s fun to layer pink and yellow to make a beautiful orange. I also like how you can get a watercolor touch or three-dimensional feel by blurring edges with a #0 Colorless Blender.
Q.When was the first time you encountered a Copic product?
Tsumori：I think it was a long time ago... I went to an art supply store that I often visited, and I bought Copic and thinking it would be useful. Copic has been around for 33 years (it's about the same time my brand TSUMORI CHISATO was launched!). So I may have been using them for about 30 years.
She is using different kinds of Copic markers.
Q.Do you have a favorite color?
Tsumori：I like RV14, RV23, R27, R20, YG21, and the colorless blender; I also like the salmon pink tones. I like the light blue colors and I add beige or brown when I get bored of just using pretty colors.
Q.Is there anything you keep in mind when you work?
Tsumori：Currently, environmental degradation and global warming are global issues. They say the fashion industry is the second worst environmentally harmful industry. To deliver clothes to people who need them, we are trying to create a made-to-order system where we first receive an order before making them. Also, as much as possible, we try to use materials that are not harmful to the environment and we try to make sustainable products. We want to make clothes that people will love for a long time and which they feel good wearing. I want to start with what I can do to connect the earth to the next generation.
TSUMORI CHISATO AUTUMN-WINTER 2020 COLLECTION
The theme of "Alice in Wonderland" is interpreted through TSUMORI CHISATO’s style. Even the small clock is handmade by her staff, and her worldview is expressed through every detail.
Q.Is there anything you want to challenge in the future?
Tsumori：The most relaxing time for me is when I’m drawing and coloring. Someday I’d like to have a solo exhibition of my artwork!
Ms. Tsumori drew portraits of us on the spot. Please look forward to Ms. Tsumori’s activities in the future!
We are so grateful that she took her precious time. As a company aiming to support people's creativity, Ms. Tsumori, who is at the forefront of the industry, and her story was very inspirational.