An interview with Mr Hara Yasuhisa was aired recently in Japan, giving us a peek on his life as a mangaka and on the Kingdom universe. You can watch the full interview on youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBZX_CokN6U
(If the video is removed, please leave a comment to inform me)
Some interesting points mentioned in the video translated from the above thread:
- Mr Hara seems to be able to bump into his fans wherever he goes, even when taking a taxi.
- Many of those who wants his autograph are girls.
- He loves to listen to BGM/OST of the Gundam series while he is drawing to concentrate
- He always have a full set of Shiji(Records of the Grand Historian) beside him so he can use it as a reference and fill in the blanks with his imagination. He imagined the entire Bayou campaign from just a single line of words.
- When drawing, other than warming his Bento and going to the washroom, he never leaves his seat
- The art of expressing a character’s feelings through their eyes was taught to him by Inoue Takehiko(who drew Slam Dunk)
- He visited the Terracotta Warriors exhibition to get an idea on how to draw the characters’ outfit. Note: He did went to China in the past to visit the real Terracotta Warriors to research on how to draw the outfits.
- Picture of Mr Hara during his middle school days(
I am guessing he is the one posing in the middleHe is the one to the far right): http://imgur.com/a/ReoOm
- Mr Hara was a salaryman and some of his minor characters were based on his ex-colleagues
- Kyuken from the Dakan plains who killed Bakukoshin was based on his ex-colleague, Kyuino Genkou(?)(http://imgur.com/VShSEp1). As you can see, Kyuken’s name is basically a shoter version of his “original”.
- Denyuu, one of Shin’s commanders, was based off his ex-colleague, Yuuden, whose name is basically just spelled backwards(http://imgur.com/0nK3D9B)
- Another of Shin’s commander, Choutetsu, is based on Choumura Tetsushi(?), similar wordplay as the first example. (http://imgur.com/60pdXsz)
- Mr Hara admitted that he cried with Bihei when he drew this panel(http://imgur.com/HJOttbl).
- Random spoiler comment(highlight to see): If Mr Hara cried drawing this, I wonder what will happen when he eventually draws the ending of the first unification war against Chu led by Shin…I can imagine it will be just like the Eclipse event in Berserk if not more tragic…I just finished the Golden Age arc of Berserk and even though i saw that coming, I still felt really sad…
- Finally, Mr Hara predicts that it will take another 10 years before the manga is complete…
Extra info after watching the video:
- Vol 1-44 of Kingdom has sold a total of 26million copies.
- We get a view of his apartment/studio
- There seems to be a message from Mr Inoue that he keeps by his desk. Perhaps as a motivation for him to continue this path.(I cant understand the message…)
- We get to see his assistants working and him giving them instructions.
- He dug out some of his random drawings on his maths working paper during his school days.
- Ogiko in real life(http://imgur.com/jfkpKQP)