Monday, November 30, 2009

DICE TSUTSUMI: Root Branch Profile #4

Dear faithful readers, my apologies for settling into a deep Thanksharing food sleep and neglecting this blog. To make up for my laziness, we shall have 2 (yes TWO) profiles per day this week.

To start off, we have a special treat for you. I first saw Dice Tsutsumi's work at a Maverix auction and was blown away by his amazing use of color and his unique, 3-d, modern yet old school style (this is the amateur art purveyor talking). Dice was also the brain train behind the hugely successful Totoro Forest Project, an art auction and exhibition that raised almost $200,000 for the Totoro Forest Foundation! Totoro and the Cat Bus can now live in peace, free from urban sprawl and us pesky humans. The image above is his contribution to the Totoro exhibit, while a work in progress.


Born and raised in Tokyo, Dice moved to NY in ‘93. After graduating from School of Visual Arts in 98, he started his career as a staff illustrator for Lucas Learning Ltd. in San Fransisco. Two years later, Dice moved back to NY to work for Blue Sky Studios as a visual development/color key artist on their blockbuster film projects such as Ice Age, Robots and upcoming Horton Hears A Who. After his long adventurous 7 year run at Blue Sky Studios, he has recently accepted the new challenge to join as an art director at Pixar Animation Studios.

Dice has actively been pursuing his illustration career outside of animation as well. His graphic novel, Noche y Dia is a part of critically acclaimed anthology Out of Picture. He is currently working on this second graphic novel, Dream of Kyosuke for Out of Picture issue #2. He also has been involved with a few potential children’s book projects.

Meanwhile, Dice continues to create his plein air oil paintings that have been featured in numerous gallery exhibitions. His oil paintings are expected to be featured in this 3 man show next June with Soosa Kim and Lou Romano.

Dice currently lives in San Francisco.

Impressive, no? Here are Dice's answers to our 3 questions:

・When did you first start to draw/create and what inspired you to do it?

I only took a drawing class because I couldn't speak English when I first came to the States but then my old classmates complimented my work which lead me to innocently believe I was good.

・What is your favorite color and why?

I don't know~~

・What kind of music (or other aural environments) do you listen to when you work and why?

It really depends. I love all sorts of music but I tend to focus better when I listen to Jazz.

Can't wait to see Dice's contribution to the Root Branch Exhibit!

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