“How fundamentals are
the most important.”

Jieun Suh | Korea
Game Designer
GREE, Inc.
Animation Course
2016 Graduate

1. Why I decided to attend Kyoto Seika University:

Due to my father's work, I lived in Japan for some time. During that time, I was exposed to Ghibli's anime and that's when it all began. Ghibli's work became my reason to draw which led me to enter a high school with a manga production department. After I found out that my high school and Kyoto Seika University were connected, I decided to attend the open campus. When I visited the animation course, one element that really resonated with me was the attitude towards the fundamentals of drawing techniques. This is when I decided that I wanted to attend Kyoto Seika University.

2. What I learned in Kyoto Seika University:

I believe that my main take away from the university is the fundamentals. Even after three years here, I have continued to hone my fundamental drawing techniques that now build the foundation of my illustration and animation skills. Also, I believe that meeting people from various countries in the international dormitory has allowed me to build my foundation of values. Before, when I would encounter an unusual person, I would set some distance between that person and myself. However now, I have learned to genuinely appreciate the differences in people. Being in a different country has widened my perspective of this world.

3. The attractiveness of Seika:

I really enjoy watching the animals on campus such as the deer or that I am able to spend time at the Kamogawa river or the Gion district with my friends. I believe that the true beauty of Seika lies in the nature and tradition that surrounds it. Although Gion is located in downtown Kyoto, the atmosphere is completely different from that of Tokyo, Osaka, and Seoul. Just like the “Seishun” (youth) in Japanese dramas, I have been able to live the college life that I had always imagined. I am grateful that my first Japanese experience was in Kyoto.

4. Life in Japan:

The fact that there are bathrooms in the convenience stores. If you really think about it, the convenience store bathrooms, in a way, is proof of trust of the citizens. In Korea, for example, the bus sometimes stops in different places which makes me nervous about being able to catch the bus. In Japan, however, the bus always stops in the same spot and then slowly departs after waiting for all the passengers to board. In Japan, I feel as though every worker takes pride in doing their job.

5. The impression of working in Japan:

Each department is different, but I've had a lot of freedom in GREE, Inc. Before I started working, I've heard many rumors about the harsh working environment that is typically associated with the Japanese workforce. Once I started working, I was caught by surprise. In comparison to Korea, there is an element of individualism. Not only are we able to decide for ourselves if we want to take part in the company drinking parties or when we want to work overtime, but I believe the treatment of designers in Japan is better.

6. Future prospects:

Right now, my job is to draw illustrations for mobile games. However, I don't view it as an accomplishment but rather a means to reach my future goal. My real goal is to build a good team to produce good things. During my internship, I learned the importance of a team. When I first came to Tokyo alone, I met many people with big dreams and realized that there are many amazing people. For my future prospects, I want to build this sort of environment.

7. A message for prospective students:

When I first came to Japan alone, my family and friends were very worried about me. I believe that it is even more important for someone like me to claim this sort of independence. It isn't about studying because everyone else is, but about learning what is necessary for you. That way, studying not only becomes more enjoyable, but what you learn becomes more meaningful. Although people make progress in things they put time into, you improve at a faster pace when you put time into something you like. So, I would say first, find out what it is that you like. To live in a culturally and traditionally rich city like Kyoto during your precious four years of college is an experience filled with excitement.