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Satoshi Urushihara

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An iconic artist whose illustrations and manga unusually really only form a fraction of his overall works is うるし原 智志 / Satoshi Urushihara (sometimes given as 漆原智志). He has had a long and illustrious career as an animator and character designer for anime, and these achievements overshadow (probably justifiably) his other works; here, the focus is on his own illustrative works however.

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A few words on just how impressive his career is. A look at the works with which he has been involved (though frequently only in a relatively minor way) shows some rather high profile works to put it mildly; Fate/stay Night, Zero no Tsukaima, Genshiken 2, Akira, Record of Lodoss War, Growlanser, etc.

And of course there are the works he was more or less creatively responsible for: Plastic Little, a variety of adult anime, several games, etc. Evaluating all those is outside the scope of this article, so now onto the works he has been directly responsible for (the ones with lots of underdressed young ladies).

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His art is excellent, if a little staid and unchanging over such a long career. There probably are some identifiable weaknesses (which I leave you to identify), but overall he is most talented. His long running work for Comic Tenma does however show signs of progress.

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There’s no need to beat around the bush; as you can see, it looks as if he pays most of his attention to drawing breasts, especially nipples (and what nipples!).

The need for prominently displayed breasts seems to dominate his work to an almost comic extent; his manga all consist almost entirely of inexplicably underdressed young ladies moving from erotically charged situation to situation, without the usual sops to sensible storyline and narrative present in most other manga of an erotic variety to some extent or another; of course, in his illustrations this is more forgivable.

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I would normally try to reproduce coherent parts of an artist’s works, especially with mangaka, but in this case there isn’t too much point – his adult manga, and sets of illustrations, tend to be rather disjointed, and so perhaps it is better just to consider the illustrations on their own merits (which are certainly abundant), rather than look at the sometimes disappointing overall works (excluding completely his involvement in the plethora of anime he has designed for, which would demand an another article).

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His art is popular and, though numerous, concentrated into a relatively readily available few volumes, so getting it will not be taxing, whatever method is selected.

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Putting aside Satoshi Urushihara’s almost irreproachable career as a character designer of high repute in the world of anime, his artistic works, particularly his manga, reveal some (chiefly non-artistic) deficiencies, such as dubious stories and a lack of variety, but whatever these deficiencies, anyone viewing his works is unlikely to be disappointed (much).

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