The Pokemon fever caught up with America in 1998 and it changed the lives of an entire generation ever since. The US anime craze began along with the start of the new millennium. Sailor Moon's middle-school magic girls; One Piece's pirates; and of course Pokemon's Ash Ketchum. All those classics along with some others were the pioneers of the Japanese animation industry. From 2002 to 2017, it doubled in size to more than 19 billion USD anually. Yet, anime's outward success doesn't tell the whole story. Behind the scenes, there's an underlying economic reality within the industry. Many of the manga artists or "mangaka" as well as animators are broke. Besides that, they deal with working conditions that can lead to health hazards and even suicide. There's tension between industry structure and artistic idealism. That forces artists to suffer exploitation for the sake of art with no solution in sight. Add to the fact that working conditions for manga and anime artists are grim. Mangakas, for the most part, fall asleep at their desks due to the heavy toll. If that wasn't enough, an animator in Japan earns on average 1.1 million yen per year. That's roughly 10,000 USD and is just above the Japan's poverty line. So do you still want to know how to become a mangaka? That's up to you. There's a certain level of passion and dedication that you must have for you to fulfill this occupation. If you want to know more about why you shouldn't pursue it in the first place, check out this list that we made.
The necessary qualities for any aspiring manga artist are having "nerves of steel," a strong stomach, and the ability to work for days without sleep, cash, or food. Wait, what? You could tell that just by reading it that it doesn't like a good career opportunity. As bad as it sounds, that's basically the prerequisites you're looking at if you want to become a manga artist. It's best to have an insane amount of dedications as well as grit.
Think of a scenario where you're a manga artist and your serial just got picked up by a big magazine like Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump. Wow, that sounds great! There's no more need to grind as much. You would think that it's all downhill from here, right? Wrong! Having a weekly manga means you have to make 20 something pages of material every week. You'll be lucky to get at least six hours of sleep per day. So if all you're free time goes into resting, do you think you'll still have time for other activities? Most likely not.
Working so hard for so long can lead to horrible medical problems especially for manga artists. Working for a long period of time in a sitting position has health hazards. Diabetes is one common sickness among manga artists despite the fact that they're not overweight. Not to mention the strain of drawing all day can really mess up your hands so much that you'll probably get tendonitis. If you really want to be a manga artist, you're just gonna have to accept tendonitis as a way of life. That's pretty tough.
As a manga artist, you'll be exposed to working well over 10 hours a day on a specific series. This means that you can kiss your normal sleeping cycle good-bye. Akira Toriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball, once said that he would barely get enough sleep when he was working on "Dr. Slump." He even said that he worked for several days straight without any sleep at all. Now, that's some dedication! Well, on the contrary, that's what will be required of you and is otherwise a normal thing.
With all the high-level manga series that these manga artists are putting out, you would think that they're making big bucks, right? No! The average salary of a manga artist is very low compared to the amount of work that they have to dedicate themselves to. Professional manga artist, Jamie Lynn Lano (Prince of Tennis) even provided the exact figures. According to her, an artist earns 10,000 yen per page. So if you draw about 32 pages per month, that's roughly 3,200 USD before taxes. There's a real struggle behind the making of a manga serial.
|1||How does "Voluntary Enslavement" sound to you?||Other||20||Paid|
|2||Prepare to have about three hours of free time a week||Other||9||Paid|
|3||Getting overworked can cause severe illness||Other||5||Paid|
|4||Your sleep pattern will be all over the place||Other||3||Paid|
|5||The pay is surprisingly low||Other||1||Paid|
Ooops, you can't comment at this time. We can't wait to hear your voice again soon!
Engage, learn and share with a friendly community versed in a massive range of trending topics.