Tohl Narita And Ryosaku Takayama 2

Ryosaku Takayama modeling Garamon

As previously described on this blog, it’s quite interesting to find the sculptor Tohl Narita drew kaiju designs and the painter Ryosaku Takayama modeld kaijus according to Narita’s designs.

I find it a great team work between the sculptor who could imagine the finished form of his design as a costume and the painter who could ‘read’ the design drawing and enrich the image to model an actual costume besides faithfully reproducing the appearance.

At any rate, Takayama definitely breathed life into the kaijus designed by Narita.


I think the greatest feature of costumes made by Takayama was that they had living, not lifeless, eyes which make us feel they are actually alive alongside the living feel of the entire surface.

It should be nothing less than Takayama’s skillful craftsmanship.

I think that a great feature about costume monsters lies in the feeling of being alive they make us feel.

As I wrote before somewhere on this blog, it’s known that Takayama often told the art university students working part time as his assistants to be aware that they were making and dealing with living creatures.


I think this is a story which makes us imagine how much Takayama loved the monsters he was modeling.

Alongside the outstandingly excellent designs drawn by Narita, a sense of life force/energy was applied to costumes by Takayama with his careful and elaborate work.

In the same line with the charm of Narita’s kaiju designs, I believe that Takayama’s modelling abilities should be an integral part of the attraction of the Ultra Kaijus adored by people even today.

4 thoughts on “Tohl Narita And Ryosaku Takayama 2”

  1. I agree about the feeling of life conveyed through the monsters’ eyes, and the most memorable example for me is Jamila. When Jamila freezes and stops destroying the village after Ide yells at him, you can see just from looking at the eyes that Jamila feels ashamed. Another good example of the eyes is Gyango — you can see the naughty/mischievous quality in his eyes.

    Do you know the short film A Small Chronicle (Aru Chiisana Kiroku)? It shows Takayama sculpting the Gats costume from Ultra Seven. You would really like it! It was a special feature on the last volume of the Ultra Seven LD Box Set, and is also on the Ultra Seven Time-Slip File DVD that comes with Ultra Seven 1967 Book + DVD.

    1. I do agree.
      I know about the short film I hear was shot on 8mm film (by his assistant?) back then though I haven’t seen it yet.
      It must be a precious documentary which has to go down in history.
      I will surely see it in the near future by all means!
      Thanks for the detailed information! (the articles of yesterday still make me smile when remembering it! Many thanks! 🙂 )

        1. Thank you so much for sharing the image! I’ve seen the film partly shown on a TV special featuring Ultraseven aired quite recently. I bet the full-length version of the film must be exciting as I’m definitely interested in drawing and sculpting!

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