Missed Simone’s last visit here? Don’t worry, the father of Tokidoki land and its colorful and quirky characters will be at Asiapop Comicon to meet fans and to sign autographs. Unicorno series 4, which was launched at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, will also debut this weekend at the event.
Check out Super’s Q&A with Simone:
What can fans expect from your visit to the APCC?
When I meet my fans I am always very happy to make a full sketch for them, I don’t limit myself to a fast autograph. I try to leave some special souvenir as a “thank you” for coming to meet me and to support Tokidoki.
You did a Peanuts x Tokidoki tote at (San Diego Comic-Con) SDCC in 2014 and another one this year. How did that collaboration happen?
I was contacted by the Peanuts team to do something fresh and innovative. I have always been a fan and it was a true honor to me. I am proud to say I am the first one who could redesign Peanuts after 65 years.
What was it like putting a Tokidoki spin on Snoopy?
I felt I wanted to adapt Snoopy’s lines and style to mine, I didn’t want to be too revolutionary but just do a modern restyled version of the original character.
What do you love about Hello Kitty that has made your partnership go on for so long already?
I love the kawaii world of Japan and Hello Kitty is definitely the queen, the strongest icon and representative. For me being able (for almost a decade) to collaborate with her was a true joy and a great exposure to the Kitty fans. I even love to work with Sanrio because they really are very innovative and leave a lot of creative freedom to artists like me.
What was your most memorable collaboration this year so far?
Hard question… it is our 10th year anniversary and we worked on some epic collaborations I really cherish—Barbie, Onitsuka Tiger, Karl Lagerfeld, all so different and all so special.
How do you keep Tokidoki fresh? Where do you find inspiration for new characters?
It’s about life dedication and I think about it all the time. When I drive, when I’m in bed, while training or during a meeting, I am always thinking about the next idea. I think I am a humble person so I always want to improve and find something new and better in myself. It’s even a matter of passion, I love my job and always want to write new pages in my life diary that is tokidoki.
What other collaborations can fans look forward to this year or early next year?
After 2015, which is full of collaborations, next year I am focusing a lot on purely Tokidoki branded items globally and on opening retail stores starting in China and Korea. There will be more collaborations continuing like Onitsuka Tiger or Hello Kitty.
You also did a Manny Pacquiao design for the movie last April, and in Giramondo you included some Philippine elements as well. If you were to design a pure Philippine print, what other elements would you put on it?
Definitely the design will be half very urban and so full of details like funny, colorful traffic, and half very natural that would represent the natural beauty of the Philippines like beaches and forests with all the icons and animals included. I am sure the more I visit the Philippines, more inspiration and details will strike my imagination.
If you could cosplay as one of your characters, which one would you pick and why?
Probably Cactus Rocker, because I think the cactus suit is one of the strongest Tokidoki icons and I was a bass player in a punk rock band in my teenage years.
What are you working on now?
I am always very busy with preparing the new seasons for the apparel, hats, bags, and some new toys. As for special collaborations, I am designing some new concepts for slot machines, preparing new sneakers with Onitsuka Tiger, more products in partnership with Hello Kitty and a couple of concepts for some events in Mainland China. I am investing way more time in painting right now because fine art is a passion for me and another of my career objectives.
Simone Legno’s signing schedule will be today (Sept. 18), 4:00-5:00pm, Saturday (Sept. 19) and Sunday (Sept. 20), 5:00-6:00pm. Visit asiapopcomicon.com for complete events schedule and follow @AsiaPOPComicon on Twitter for updates.