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TOSHIHIRO EGAWA (EX.STUDIO-SHO)
HOMETOWN / OSAKA JAPAN
BORN / 1973
Painter, death metal artist/illustrator from Osaka, Japan.
For over 10 years, Toshihiro has done numerous works of CG art, watercolor and ink paintings and drawings for death metal bands from 23 different countries all over the world. He has numerous projects under his belt, which include CD album covers, logos, t-shirt designs, and much more.
In 1973, Toshihiro was born in Osaka, Japan. When his parents divorced, he ended up moving to Kagoshima, where his grandfather, who operated a local billboard business, resided.
When he turned 10 years old, Toshihiro began to develop a strong interest for grotesque subjects such as how fragile human mortality was, death, and corpses. In other words, this is the age where he began to develop his craft into what you see today. He started with drawing different works of art and comics with extreme amounts of gruesome brutality, death, and violence. At this point, he began to develop an incredibly profound passion for capturing the brutality and cruelty that man is capable of.
When Toshihiro graduated high school, he found work further up north in Tokyo, and moved. However, he eventually returned to Osaka to help out his father-in-law fishmonger's shop. For a while, Toshihiro stopped drawing and creating new works of art, but with the strong support and help from his father-in-law, who at one point wished to be a poet, Toshihiro began to once again pursue his passion and further develop his career on his own.
The following year, Toshihiro's father-in-law's health took a bad turn for the worse, which caused him severe depression. He committed suicide by hanging himself from his neck. This unfortunate event gave Toshihiro inspiration an even further curiosity of death, violence, and mortality, which only further deepened his interest.
After the suicide of his father-in-law, Toshihiro converted to Christianity. The Bible, Christian Mythology and religious artworks were the reasons for his conversion. His interest in the Bible, Christian Mythology and paintings derived from Christianity were just a few of the reasons for his conversion. Toshihiro isn't a strict Christian anymore; rather, just like many other Japanese natives, Toshihiro has an interest in Shinto and other sorts of animism.
In 1999, Toshihiro received a request from a longtime Japanese death metal record label company (whom he had a strong relationship with) to do the mini CD coverart for the Colombian band, INTERNAL SUFFERING. In the span of one month, this one coverart job got Toshihiro over 100 requests from artists, labels, and potential clients from all over the world. After doing many projects and gigs for various metal bands from all over the world, Toshihiro's interest in Christianity and mythology, human brutality, and anticipation of death became deeper than ever, which eventually branched out to Memento mori and Danse Macabre.
In June 2010, Toshihiro developed advanced bradycardia (complete heart block) and had a pacemaker inserted into him during an emergency surgery, where his heart stopped more than three times. Toshihiro rode it out, gave it hell, and came out alive. On July 8 of the same year, he had a permanent pacemaker installed, and was able to safely check out of the hospital on July 16th. Just like other difficult encounters that Toshihiro overcame in life and turned it into something inspirational, this life-threatening event, chock-full of tribulations, further deepened his view and experiences from the edge of death, and gave him fresh new ideas and motifs for his artwork. As Toshihiro went on to make items to exhibit, he still found time to create artwork for an intensely wide range of clients, artists, idols, and death metal bands.