Don’t rush, don’t rush. Just rest a bit with Kanae Sato!

Don’t rush, don’t rush. Just rest a bit with Kanae Sato!

Don’t rush, don’t rush. Just rest a bit with Kanae Sato!

Starting her career as an illustrator since 2010, Kanae Sato has been creating book covers and illustrating books for the past 10 years. Kanae pursues the style of simplicity, the simple characters with bright colors she draws may recall your childlike heart, like it’s reminding us to slow down our pace and focus on what we can see.



AWW: How would you describe your work?

Kanae Sato: I am drawing children and animals in a simple style.
Many of my illustration works are ordered for books about childbirth, parenting, and childcare. And recently, some picture books I have drawn for children are published in the U.S. and Canada.



AWW: How did you start illustrating for books? What inspired you to draw in this style?

Sato: For books, I always try to reduce elements and place them with eye-catching colors and forms.

For my original works, I want to make them not just cute, but wired and unstable with a hint of elusiveness.

But I tend to be asked to make drawings totally cute and positive; some of them are just for explanations.



AWW: Do you have a favorite book cover? What do you love about the illustrations of the book?

Sato: I love the three children’s picture books I had drawn in 2008; Wiggle Jump Tickle, Happy Grumpy Loved and Hide Seek Stinky Sweet.
I persuade eye-catching and straightforward colors and forms in them.



AWW: What is your most used drawing tools or supplies?

Sato: I use acrylic gouache on watercolor paper. And I often use digital paintings (Adobe Photoshop).



AWW: Can you share with us the process of illustrating a book? What are the important steps?

Sato: Meeting with the editors and designers. —> Provide rough sketches. (sometimes several patterns are required.) —> Finish up the drawing and digitalize. —> Send the data to the client and leave everything to the book designer.



I believe the most essential part of the process is the meeting with the editor and designer. We consider their request; what kind of impression the book should give, and what kind of people should choose the book?

We discuss those themes imaging they are displayed in a bookstore.



AWW: Can you share or draw your favorite motto or quote to us?

Sato: “Don’t rush, don’t rush. Just rest a bit.”

It is a line Ikkyu-san always said, a little Buddhist-priest from a famous Anime “Ikkyu-san” which I watched when I was a little child (Awate-nai awate-nai. Hito yasumi hito yasumi)

This line touches my heart recently.


To find out more about Kanae Sato please visit the artist's website  |


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