Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • this is a day in the life of a japanese

  • anime figure sculptor

  • *alarm rings*

  • This is Sho, 24 years old living in

  • Tokyo and he's just waking up for work.

  • [Music]

  • He lives alone in this one room studio

  • apartment and prefers to keep things

  • simple so he can focus on work and his hobbies

  • which we'll get into later on

  • Oh he's doing skin care, common in Japan

  • as 58 percent of males in their 20s use skin care products

  • Wow his apartment is stacked with manga

  • which is fairly common in Japan as manga

  • is so embedded in popular Japanese culture

  • that 80 percent of the adults

  • read manga regularly.

  • Sho! You didn't eat breakfast.

  • I suppose that it's quite common for Gen Z in Japan to spend their time in the morning

  • watching youtube.

  • Sho is originally from Chiba, a neighboring prefecture.

  • He moved to Tokyo to attend Musashino Bijutsu University

  • one of the top art schools in Japan.

  • He studied industrial design

  • and calligraphy but decided to pursue as a GENKEISHI

  • but decided to pursue his career as a genkeishi aka figure sculptor.

  • Like most Japanese, he commutes to work by train.

  • Luckily, his home station is less than a five minute walk away.

  • He has about a 15 to 20 minutes train ride including one transfer.

  • A little better than the average salaryman.

  • Good morning, everyone!

  • We're back with another Day in the Life.

  • Sho should be coming in just a little bit.

  • Excited to see how he's doing this morning.

  • Good morning!

  • Did you sleep well last night?

  • His office is located in Akihabara - the capital of Japanese otaku culture,

  • synonymous for anime, manga, maid cafes, and, of course, figures.

  • Sho has worked three years at Good Smile Company,

  • also called gusma by people in the know.

  • It's one of the top figure production companies in Japan,

  • with about 175 staff in their Tokyo office,

  • creating all sorts of popular figures

  • like Jujutsu Kaisen and even Kimetsu no Yaiba.

  • Workers here take off their shoes before going into the office,

  • which is customary in the Japanese home,

  • but less common these days in a Japanese office setting,

  • especially as a company-wide policy.

  • The company must really want their staff to feel at home.

  • The very first thing he does when he arrives at work,

  • is to write his shukkin nippo aka daily log.

  • So what do you write in your daily log?

  • Now Sho has his daily team meeting.

  • Each person reports how their current project is progressing,

  • as well as an estimated completion date.

  • Within his department, there are a total of six different teams, all meeting separately.

  • Now Sho has time to focus on sculpting.

  • What are you making right now?

  • Sho sculptures figure prototypes by hand, using nendo (in English - putty or clay).

  • In his case, a polyester putty.

  • For his main tools, he uses a toothpick to add putty

  • and a sharp q-tip to smooth out the surface.

  • So what does a genkeishi do?

  • When he started at the company, his main tasks were to support senior staff,

  • who were making the actual prototypes,

  • by helping to make minor adjustments to the final prototype.

  • As he gained more experience, he was given responsibility

  • for smaller parts like hands and legs

  • and eventually advanced his skill enough

  • to create a full prototype on his own.

  • In case you didn't know, nendoroid is the company's popular figure series,

  • which are typically figures with a large head and a smaller body.

  • The company has produced over 1500 figures in the last 15 years.

  • The nendoroid name itself came from a team in the company who created it - Nendoron.

  • So it looks like Sho's going to be at his desk for just a little bit longer.

  • While he's doing that, why don't we go around

  • and try to figure this place out.

  • Wow, as you can see, this is their main entrance,

  • and they have so many cool figures here.

  • Let me show you.

  • This is a pretty impressive display!

  • It seems like they've got everything here.

  • Oh, look, there's someone actually standing over there.

  • Let's see what they're doing.

  • Excuse me, what are you doing right now?

  • What's that?

  • Pop Up Parade is their reasonably priced figure series

  • Pop Up Parade is their reasonably priced figure series

  • at a lower cost compared to their super high quality figures

  • and even their nendoroid series.

  • So what do you do?

  • Which one is your favorite?

  • How about this one?

  • It seems like he has a lot of favorites.

  • Oh, wow, what is that?

  • You've made this?

  • How long did it take you to make this product?

  • So one of the things that I love the most about going into this office

  • is that some of the desks are designed so cool!

  • For example, check out this desk.

  • Oh, wow, a little guy is sleeping on the back of the screen!

  • And check out this desk right here.

  • I think we found a winner.

  • This is where all the executives sit,

  • and, you can see, in the middle they even have their own meeting space.

  • So it looks like they do all the 3D printing here.

  • Let's have a look around.

  • Damn, they have a lot of 3D printers!

  • Oh, and this one is printing right now!

  • They even have work benches,

  • readily used after the prototypes are 3D printed

  • as they come out jagged and still need to be shaved and smoothed out by hand.

  • This area, right here, looks like the place where they take all the pictures,

  • probably before the release, and then they take these pictures

  • and put them on the website.

  • So one thing we never do when we're doing these explorations

  • is check the basement floor.

  • So let's do that now, cause I'm a little bit interested.

  • Oh, wow, that is crazy!

  • These are serious real deal racing cars!

  • This is amazing! It's crazy. I don't even know what to say.

  • I'm gonna need to ask Sho what this is all about.

  • Hey, Sho, I've found some insane cars downstairs. Why are they there?

  • Hey, Sho, I've found some insane cars downstairs. Why are they there?

  • So they've had racing cars

  • wrapped with the Hatsune Miku design ever since 2008. That's wild!

  • Now he sprays the surfacer on the figure

  • to make the dents more visible, so it's easier to polish.

  • Wow, the smell here is pretty strong.

  • Is that duct sucking up all the fumes?

  • It looks like all the desks have their own personal duct

  • to remove smells and figure shavings.

  • So what's the most enjoyable part of your job?

  • So this is the room where they cast the silicone molds

  • and produce the resin prototypes.

  • Sho's still working on the figure's hair,

  • but the face has been completed.

  • So he's able to make the resin prototype for that.

  • The milky looking block is a finished silicone mold

  • made from the putty prototype.

  • A precise resin mixture is then poured into the mold.

  • Once completely filled, the mold is placed into a de-aerator,

  • which creates a vacuum inside,

  • removing oxygen and other dissolved gases from the liquid mixture.

  • Afterwards, Sho lets the resin sit, so it can harden.

  • These finalized resin prototypes are sent to the factory and

  • metal molds are created from them to mass produce the finished product.

  • Yay, finally, lunch time!

  • Apparently, Sho is running low on putty,

  • so he needs to stop by the supply shop on his way to pick up lunch.

  • This is one of his favorite hobby shops in Akihabara, Tamtam,

  • and, conveniently, it's just next to the office.

  • They don't have it?

  • They don't have it?

  • I guess he found another brand [Note: same brand, different type: epoxy instead of polyester.]

  • Like most days, he picks up lunch at the convenience store

  • and eats it in his office's kyukeishitsu a.k.a. rest area.

  • What are you eating?

  • As expected, he finishes lunch pretty quickly,

  • so he uses the rest of the time to read manga.

  • Sho, what are you reading?

  • After lunch, he has a final meeting

  • with a figure planner and production team member

  • about the prototype he's working on.

  • Oh, that's the guy who made the Bakugo Katsuki.

  • They meticulously review each section to see if it matches the original design,

  • and if any changes need to be made before showing it to the president.

  • What are you doing now?

  • Oh, he's printing out eyes for his figure.

  • I see what he's doing.

  • Apparently, eyes sometimes get smudged when working on the bangs,

  • so he's applying freshly printed eye decals

  • to ready it for the presentation with the president.

  • I guess, I have some more free time.

  • Let's go talk to some people.

  • Just over here, there're a lot of people with some big screens.

  • Let's see what they're doing.

  • Excuse me

  • What are you doing right now?

  • He creates prototype figures, just like Sho, but on his PC.

  • Only when he finishes, he prints out his figures on their 3D printers.

  • Did you learn all this in school?

  • Wow, this is so cool!

  • What was the hardest part about making this one?

  • I wonder what these people are doing over here.

  • This guy looks like he's doing something interesting.

  • Excuse me, can I ask what you're doing?

  • How long have you been with the company?

  • Do you get to decide the colors on your own?

  • Where are you going now?

  • Finally, it's go time to see the president.

  • Sho does seem a little nervous, I'm sure he'll be fine though.

  • The front looks a little bulky.

  • Okay.

  • That's another fix.

  • Well, I guess, that's what it's like to meet the president.

  • So, how did it go?

  • Now he spends the rest of the day to fix all the items the president pointed out.

  • By the way, what are these?

  • Wow, it's a white-out tape,

  • a nail cutter,

  • and a pencil sharpener.

  • Definitely Made in Japan!

  • It seems like the face parts are done.

  • Are you done for today?

  • Yes, with this I'm done for today.

  • Finally, finished!

  • But, before leaving, he makes sure to complete his daily log.

  • But, before leaving, he makes sure to complete his daily log.

  • After work, he often goes out with his friends and co-workers for a quick drink,

  • but, because of covid, he's gonna keep it simple tonight

  • and pick up dinner on his way home.

  • Itadakimasu.

  • Nice, tonight's dinner is somen noodles with tempura.

  • You know, you kind of have a crazy diet.

  • Well, at least, you're having wasabi, kind of a veggie.

  • What are you doing now?

  • Oh, he's making ojisan figures a.k.a. old dudes.

  • In case you didn't know,

  • every figure created has a sculptor's name on the box.

  • Maybe, one day, if you ever buy a figure, you'll see Sho's name on it.

  • So it looks like Sho is going to be doing this for another few hours,

  • and then he's going to go sleep later tonight at 12.

  • But that's pretty much the day in his life.

  • Let me know what you thought in the comments below.

  • If you want to see any more videos, also let me know in the comments.

  • If you want to see what I'm doing on the daily, check out my Instagram account.

  • If you want to help support the channel, check out the Tokyo merch.

  • And if you want to see more Day in the Life videos,

  • I have so much more to come,

  • so hit that subscribe button and the bell button, and I'll catch you guys in the next one.

this is a day in the life of a japanese

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

B1 figure putty manga resin prototype japanese

Day in the Life of a Japanese Anime Figure Sculptor

  • 19 1
    Summer posted on 2021/07/15
Video vocabulary