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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Meet Our 2010-2011 Manga Artists

Say hello to this season's opera manga artists Sara OuYang, Lily Dai, Rafaella Ryon and Betty Kwong!

Fiona Meng, our illustrious manga artist for the past 3 seasons, is currently furthering her training at the Academy of Art University Graduate Illustration program in San Francisco. Although we were sad that she wasn't available to work with us this year, we're super excited to introduce these four up-and-coming talents.

Let's get acquainted, shall we?

Sara OuYang

Sarah is an animation student at Emily Carr University of Art and Design. From a young age, she was interested and inspired by Japanese manga. Besides illustrating, she also enjoys studying, designing, and constructing costumes.


Sarah will be illustrating Lillian Alling

What’s your favourite manga?
That is a hard question considering there are so many great ones out there! I would have to say that Yami no Matsuei and Count Cain would be one of my favorites while growing up, currently I am into Kuroshitsuji.

Which manga artist do you admire?
Kaori Yuki and Yana Toboso. I like artists whose drawings and stories possesses slightly historic or Gothic characteristics.

How did you get interested in the manga artform?
I believe I first started reading manga in grade 1, and have been hooked ever since. I love all the different stories available out there, and how each manga's individual art style contributes to their own story. With this, I wanted to create character and stories of my own. That's when I began drawing manga.

What kind of schooling/training did you receive in order to be a manga artist?
I don't think I've had "proper" training to be a manga artist... (does illustration and animation courses count?) However, reading lots of instruction books and referencing manga itself really contributed to my learning.

Ever dress up as a manga character?
Haha, yes! Cosplaying is my all time favorite hobby. Right now I'm doing a series as Ciel Phantomhive from Kuroshitsuji. If theres something I enjoy more than drawing, it would be making costumes.

Are you a fan of comic books? If yes, which one(s)?
I haven't read a lot of comic books, but my favorite would probably be Batman.


Lily Dai


Lily will be illustrating Lucia di Lammermoor

What’s your favourite manga?
Definitely Card Captor Sakura.

Which manga artist do you admire?
Yukiru Sugisaki

How did you get interested in the manga artform?
It's fun, simple and quick to illustrate what is in my mind.

What kind of schooling/training did you receive in order to be a manga artist?
I would say with passion, nothing is impossible. Other than that, basic art training (such as human anatomy) could be helpful too.

Ever dress up as a manga character?
Yes, cosplay is fun.

Are you a fan of comic books? If yes, which one(s)?
Comic books? I used to read Superman alot...but after that, I realize that I am more into Mangas.


Rafaella Ryon

Brazilian born Rafaella received a BA in Art and Media from Federal University of Campina Grande in 2006. Since 2001 has been professionally developing artworks, mostly as an illustrator. In 2009, she received an honorable mention in the 3rd International Manga Award, established by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Rafaella oves fashion design, action figures collection, Puzzle Bobble, Demis Roussos, Death Wish III and Venger.


Rafaella will be illustrating La clemenza di Tito

What’s your favourite manga?
I do not know, actually. A manga that I really loved and did raise my desire of being a manga artist was a volume of Vampire Princess Miyu when I was 15 or16 years old.

Which manga artist do you admire?
Ayami Kojima and Yoshitaka Amano are my all-time favorite Japanese artists.

How did you get interested in the manga artform?
I grew up playing video games and I think most of the blame are from this stuff.

What kind of schooling/training did you receive in order to be a manga artist?
That was something spontaneous, unplanned. I grew up wanting to be a designer, manga emerged in the way and helped me grow as an artist. I kind of self-learned to draw, then I absorbed other styles, from realistic to the most cartoonish. About the manga style I did the basics, a lot of observation and training.

Ever dress up as a manga character?
No. I tried dress up as the Count of Monte Cristo (Gankutsuou series) but never did. I bought everything from his outfit, hahah.

Are you a fan of comic books?
Of course! I love horror comics like Dylan Dog, the fabulous wordless Gon series, the incredibly beauty from La Guerre des Sambres, Death: The High Cost of Living and many more comics.


Betty Kwong

Betty is a 4th year Emily Carr University student majoring in Animation. In her free time, she enjoys drawing, playing video games, hanging out with friends and watching animation. This is her first experience publishing a manga project, so she is very excited!


Betty and her avatar will be illustrating La traviata

What’s your favourite manga?
Monster by Naoki Urasawa

Which manga artist do you admire?
I have a lot of favorites, but Takeshi Obata amazes me.

What kind of schooling/training did you receive in order to be a manga artist?
I am a self-taught artist. The majority of my inspiration comes from the online art community.

Ever dress up as a manga character?
I cosplayed as game characters and my original character, but not manga haha. A lot of my inspiration also comes from games.

Are you a fan of comic books?
I don't read a lot of comic books. I mostly just browse for random short webcomics, although I did enjoy American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang.

Four manga artists for four operas. We can't wait to share their visions of our operas with you!

~ Ling Chan, Social Media Manager

Poster artwork by Leonard Dente

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