Modern Video Game Characters Recreated in Traditional Japanese Style

If you love reading inspiring Kickstarter stories about artists who don’t just hit their goals but blow past them, then you’ll want to check this out. Recently, illusrator Jed Henry teamed up with woodblock printmaker David Bull to create an awesome art parody project called Ukiyo-e Heroes. Taking those classic Japanese video game characters we all know and love, he blasted them back to the past, trading in their modern-day outfits for medieval ones, while keeping the essence of each character the same.

The 12 total designs are all available as high-quality digital prints and seven of them are available as hand-made woodblock prints. As Jed told Kickstarter: “I knew my visual ideas could be produced as digitally printed posters, but I didn’t want to stop there – I also wanted to create actual woodblock prints. So I contacted my friend Dave Bull in Tokyo, to see what advice he could offer. I was in luck. Dave was so excited about my designs, he immediately offered to make a print of one. He jumped right in and began work, even though I could not guarantee that we would be able to sell them. The blocks for this design are now carved and ready, and Dave has produced some proofs for me.” (See above.)

With 2,422 backers, Jed Henry far exceeded his goal of $10,400, raising an incredible $313,341. In fact, the project brought in over $40,000 in the last day alone. In the comments section, Henry gave this piece of advice to fellow illustrators.

“The best advice I can give is to be half entrepreneur, half illustrator. There are so many opportunities out on the internet to find work. One friend sells TONS of cute prints on Etsy. Another friend of mine spent years posting on Deviant Art, and was offered a job to work at Nickelodeon, on Ninja Turtles, by a DA contact. Know what the internet can do for you, and take advantage of it!”

Gallery Nucleus tipped us off to this project and, on their website, they still have a few limited edition prints left. You can also find all the prints on the Ukiyo-e Heroes’ website.

Ukiyo-e Heroes’ website

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