Q1 : What sort of club activities did you in junior high and high school?
A : I was in the art club in junior high, and in high school I was in the astronomy club. I really had a lot of fun in both. The astronomy club, especially, was the same club Nekoi-chan and Igarashi-kun were in, and watching the Leonids meteor shower with them was a deeply emotional experience.
Q2 : Your first artbook, Hiten Muma, recently went on sale. How do you feel?
A : Ohkawa’s formatting was super cool. Please take a look at it, everyone! If it were me and I have 3200 yen, though, I’d probably spend it on Phil Collins-sama’s new CD instead… to everyone who brought the artbook, are you really sure it was worth it?
Q3 : What do you recall when you think of your birthplace, Kyoto?
A : How I used to see a lot of Japanese weasels close to my school, I guess. They were long, lithe, smart animals, kind of like squirrels, so at least I figured that they were weasels… I also skipped classes to go to Gion or the Sanjuusangen-dou temple often when I was in junior college. At Sanjuusangen-dou I would go see the sculptures of the 28 Guardian Deities, and in Gion I would go see the yamabushi and maiko.
Q4 : Any recent books, TV series, or video releases you want to recommend?
A : They’re not very recent, but I’d recommend the movies Showboat, The Sound of Music and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. They’ve all came out on VHS. (Sorry that my picks are all so old…) For TV, Onihei Hankachou, Tokusou Saizensen (both of them have ended, though) and Sekai Fushigi Hakken, I guess. With late night shows, I think Level no Label and Book Maker are fun.
Q5 : Which of CLAMP’s commercialized works is your favourite?
A : It’s a bit different from what ‘liking something’ means to most people, but Gakuen Tokkei Dukylon just oozes with things that are to our tastes at CLAMP, so it’s the most fun to draw.
Q6 : What has captured your interest the most lately?
A : ‘Latin’.
Q7 : Are there any restaurants or dishes you’d recommend in Kyoto?
A : The bento at Rokupon or the seafood pot at Kentarou, I guess. The ohagi they sell in Sannenzaka. It’s just really, really good. Lately, I’ve also been really keen to try out the souffle at the branch of Rokupon that doubles as a teahouse.
Q8 : Any places you can recommend in Tokyo?
A : Meros in Ikebukuro (I understand that it’s being renovated and will change its name, but), they make this really delicious tiramisu and party food.
Q9 : Can you write us something for each of the other 5 CLAMP members?
Ohkawa Nanase-san : Nana-nyan, thank you so much for all your hard work writing all these stories. Four years ago, you came up with the RG Veda story in five minutes, and it’s got 3 volumes out now; we’ve finally reached the part with Aizenmyou-ou. Once we meet Rasetsu, we’ll be in uncharted territory that the summary in Disco Version never wrote about. But I’ll do my best to follow your lead. You’ll still have to put up with me from now on, but please continue to look out for me.
Akiyama Tamayo-san : It’s not good to let your health fall apart. Cluster is in its last stages now, isn’t it? I know it’s very difficult, but please do your best. And don’t forget to take care of yourself, either.
Igarashi Satsuki-sama : I’ve been relying on you so much, all the time, I really can’t apologize to you enough. You were so busy with your work, Sacchan, but if you didn’t make me all those delicious meals, I’d have starved to death already. And your cooking has gotten so good lately! That means you’re ready to become a bride now, whenever that happens. I don’t want you to get married before me, though…
Nekoi Mick-sama : Without our increasingly gorgeous Nekoi-kun, neither RG Veda nor Tokyo Babylon would’ve became reality. You’ve carried, hauled, lugged and otherwise dragged me so much in all this, and I’m really, really sorry to have been such a burden. I don’t even know how many post-all-nighter sunrises we’ve seen together anymore… I’ll follow you forever. Please don’t abandon me.
Sei Leeza-sama : The days have gotten hot and sweaty lately, so someone who loves bathing as much as you probably is taking baths every day, Leeza-san. But I’m going to guess that your baths must be as hot as an old Edo Grandpa. Baths that are too hot aren’t good for the body either, or so I heard, so please take care of yourself. I know things will get tough with Combination from now on, but please do your best.
Q10 : Can you tell us any favourite brands of cosmetics, perfume, or shampoo?
A : For skincare, I use Shiseido’s Premier line of products. I use Sofina for my foundation, and for perfume it’s the bottle of SASO that I got as a gift. Other than that, I also like Kenzo’s Eau de Parfum and Egyptian Lotus Essence, though I don’t really use them. I use plain & rich shampoo and rinse. Lipstick is Reciente and Déjà vu. Sometimes I also use the Chanel lipstick that I got as a gift, too. Then there’s Max Factor and so on. Most of my lipsticks are in the pink and orange color ranges.
Q11 : You’re known as something of a ‘wandering heart’ with your tastes in fandom. Who are your current favourites?
A : Someone like Abe Hiroshi-san, Katou Gou-sama, Saigou Teruhiko-sama or Nakamura Kichiemon-sama are right up my alley. And there’s Satomi Koutarou-sama’s gentleness, Shibata Kyouhei-sama’s figure, Motoki Masahiro-kun’s sense of humor that runs cross-counter with his looks, the way Tachi Hiroshi-san looks when he’s standing, Arnold Schwarznegger-san, or that person who plays Mr. Spock in Star Trek.
Q12 : We’ve heard that you have pet birds at the house. What are their names? Please tell us any fun stories you have about them, too.
A : Right now there’s a java sparrow and three budgerigars. Piiko the java sparrow (what an embarrassing name…) is a bird that escaped into our house. She loves taking baths. Of the budgerigars, the green one was born right in our house and we named him Pata. Full name ‘Patalliro du Malyner IV’, to be precise, though my mother still believes that I named him for the way he pad-pads around the house… he’s a good boy who always comes to wake me up in the morning.
Q13 : Can you tell us what art materials or paper you use when drawing color illustrations?
A : Well, I use different things for each work… but. For color paintings I mostly use color inks. With RG Veda I also use Aeroflash, Liquitex and modeling paste. For 20 Mensou ni Onegai!!, I only use color inks. Tokyo Babylon uses color tones. Other than that, I’ll use whatever I know how to use. I use Powder Board [sic] for paper. With larger pieces, I use Baron Kent paper stretched with water.
Q14 : What is your favourite pen? And ink?
A : As far as pens go, I use Zebra’s maru-pen and kabura-pen nibs. With inks, I use Kaimei’s Indian Ink. For color inks, Holbein’s Special Black. Depending on the situation, I also mainly use things like Holbein’s Grey or Nouvel’s Burnt Sienna.
Q15 : On average, how many pages of black and white manuscript can you draw in a day?
A : Going from rough draft to inking, I’d put it at about 10 pages per day.
Q16 : Please tell us who your most beloved fictional character is up to now.
A : My first love is Kabuto Koji-kun from Mazinger Z, but my love was shattered the moment Daisuke-san appeared in Grendizer. It’s so upsetting to lose to a man! I suppose my greatest love is Rodem from Babel II…but I love Friender, too. I’ve got such a cheating heart…
Q17 : What is your favourite brand of clothing?
A : Nicole, mainly. And Comme ça de Mode Tricotte that I got from Nanase-chan. A little bit of Junior GAULTIER that I got as spoils of war from Y’S Burgen. I also love HIROMICHI NANAKO‘s coats. After that, it’s BIGI. That’s all I have on hand, I think. If I could afford it, I’d love to have something from Youji Yamamoto, too. I also have a special fondness for Jane Maple, and I always check its new collections.
Q18 : Your favourite color?
A : Black. After that, I like the tone of rouge that’s a bit dark and neutral.
Q19 : Favourite flower?
A : I like flowering trees. Things like sakura, quince, or peach. I also love pink-and-white tulips, they look like works of art.
Q20 : What kind of present makes you happy?
A : There’s no present that wouldn’t make me happy. Being given something makes me happy by itself. Especially things like rice or miso… I really like awase miso. I like canned white peaches, too~
Q21 : What have you been emotionally moved by lately?
A : The fact that I’ve ran into a blue-eyed husky puppy near my house.
Q22 : If you could pick one CLAMP character for a husband, who would you choose?
A : Definitely Zouchouten. But I’m not sure if I want his colleagues or subordinates to come to my house…
In that sense, I think Hirota Ikuo-san from Shoten would make a good husband. And if we’re going to go there, Kaitzuka-san is also really, really my type, and he’d be a good pick, too~ He’s good with children, he’s kind, he’s just the right age, he’s reliable… the true charm of men really doesn’t manifest until they’re over 30, right? He has a smorgasbord of family issues, though…
Q23 : If you could pick one CLAMP character for a boyfriend, who would you choose?
A : Okiya Shougo-kun! I want to go on a one-day trip to Hokkaido with him and eat ramen.
Q24 : If you could become one CLAMP character, who would you choose?
A : Either of 20 Mensou ni Onegai!!‘s Mother A or B. I want to do all the underhanded things!
Q25 : Can you tell us who your favourite character is among the ones you’ve drawn? Please tell us the reason, too!
A : I can’t say any one character is my favourite, but Fuuten Vayu-kun from RG Veda is such a bizarro weirdo that it feels extraordinarily satisfying. From an artist’s perspective, a character who shows a clear personality like that is a lot easier to draw.
Q26 : What would you call your ‘treasure’?
A : My luck.
Q27 : What did you want to be when you were young?
A : I wanted to be a lot of things. Back in kindergarten, I wanted to be a nurse or a shinkansen driver, just like your average kid…
Q28 : Can you tell us what kind of person your ideal man is?
A : Someone who’s reliable, over 30, good with kids, kind… I’m also weak to someone who’s perfected some sort of art or craft. (Like the contemporary art masters…)
Q29 : What comes to mind when you think of CLAMP.
A : A speculator group. The cinders of the bubble economy. The queen of media mix.
Q30 : Please give us a message for the readers of CLAMP Newspaper?
A : Thank you for staying with us, whether you are readers who have been with us since our doujinshi days or readers who came aboard with our commercialized works. Please continue to stay with us with your mind wide open. We’re in your hands from now on.
Translated from Japanese by ET.
 Pata-pata is a Japanese onomatopoeia for a somewhat clumsy way of walking.
 The actual name is apparently Powder Color Board.
 Friender is a character from Shinzou Ningen Casshern.
 She’s literally referring to master artists and craftsmen who’s been selected as a modern master of crafts by the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.
This Q&A was originally published in CLAMP NEWS 6, released in August 1991. Original scans available upon request.
If you found mistakes in this translation or would like to contribute with translating other interviews, please contact me.