Midterms is here and since this will be a heavy week for me, I will make this blog post very light.
Yesterday, during our Com 207.3 my professor asked if what comes to our mind when we talk about Japan and then I immediately answered "innovation" but after the class I was thinking that I should have answered "Hello Kitty".
Hello Kitty is one of Japan's trademark , it is a fictional character produced by the Japanese company Sanrio. It was first designed by Yuko Shimizu in 1974 and was brought to the States in 1976. By the way , below is a photo of Yuko Shimizu who is now a New York based award winning illustrator.
After reading about Hello Kitty and Yuko Shimizu, I gain a deeper understanding about Japanese approach on creativity.They use their creativity to communicate globally and to gain profit as well. Just like when Hello Kitty was realeased, Sanrio's sales increased seven times up, to think it's just a cat with a red bow on it. The appeal of Hello Kitty to the public is amazing especially to young girls who wants cute stuff, something very girly and attractive. I can say that Hello Kitty is one of Japan's icon and it is very evident when you go to their country because Hello Kitty's face is all over the place.
Hello Kitty Hotel
Hello Kitty Bus
But wait, In Italy there is a Hello Kitty train which is very cute and pink. This is just an evidence that Hello Kitty addiction is spread globally already. Who would not want to ride to this train? I mean it's so cute, pink and different. I'm wondering what's the feeling when you are inside that Hello Kitty train. :)
Hello Kitty Train
I myself grew up with Hello Kitty, I remember the days when my cousin from Japan brings me Hello Kitty stuff. The joy that i'm feeling that time is different, I'm just a happy little girl. But now, even though I'm an adult already , I'm still smiling whenever someone gives me Hello Kitty stuff but then there's more to that now. I am now very curious with her history and how she was designed. She is clearly a product of Japanese creativity. Maybe the designer Shimizu used the principles of Kaizen because looking at Hello Kitty, she is small, simple with her red bow on it, incomplete because as you can see she has no mouth and when you look at her, she communicates just by her expression. Hello Kitty's transformation is one of a kind, because of the creativeness of Japanese and using Hello Kitty as their icon, the packaging of some of their food has Hello Kitty's face on it. It's a good thing I guess because whenever we purchase something with Hello Kitty's face on it, we immediately remember the country, Japan.
Hello Kitty Bacon Strips
Hello Kitty Corn Flakes
Hello Kitty Cheetos
Hello Kitty has gone a long way already, this cat is very popular now and soon our children and grand children would still make Hello Kitty as part of their childhood. Thanks to the Japanese and to Yuko Shimizu for bringing us Hello Kitty. Also , thank you to Sanrio for living up to their mission which is "social communication" thru Hello Kitty and other Sanrio characters. I'm just wondering what would a little girl's childhood be without Hello Kitty? hmmmmm...