Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W Key Visual Creative Director / Producer
CEO of NION INC., a company which produces content films, advertisements, music videos, installation art, etc. and Aww Inc., the first virtual human company in Asia.
In charge of the production and creative direction of the key visual of Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 S/S and Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W, 2 seasons consecutively. Starting with the creation of imma, Japan’s first virtual human, Mr. Moriya has been introducing new virtual humans, one after another, continuing to be active as the leader of the digital industry. We talked to him about various themes, including the theme of the key visual and its production process, his future aspirations towards the fashion industry.
【Key Visual：1】 A world which as replaced「Virtual = Dream world」for real
− The theme of the key visual of Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W is「DREAMY – METAVERSE REAL」. Mr. Moriya says, the image of this is a sort of part 2 continual of the 2021 S/S theme, 「TOKYO METABERSE(※)」. (※ The world that Mr. Moriya advocates, in which the real world coexists with 2D or 3D animation characters)
“Due to being in the mist of the spread of the COVID-19 infection, I feel, people’s dreams towards the digital world are getting stronger. In virtual, anybody can go to any place they wish at any time, and there are people have changed their living atmosphere away from the city to rural areas. When things which were ordinary and everyday become unordinary, and people are told they can spend their time freely, it seems people tend to choose nature. ‘Virtual is a delusion’, and ‘delusions are dreams’. When thinking about whether to go into virtual or returning to real nature, ‘I thought, why not both?’, so I tried expressing by replacing the delusion axis (virtual) with real nature, under the keyword ‘DREAM’
− Mr. Moriya says, in the background of this, there was the influence a new film project he is presently involved with.
“Presently, I’m involved in the creation of film using a filming technique called virtual production. I launched a studio this month as its executive. Simply put, this is a shooting technique in which, instead of synthesizing CG with a green back, a 3DCG (Unreal) visual is projected on a LED (display) placed in the background and shot with a real person placed in front. By doing so, we are able to shoot visuals as if that person is actually standing in that space. For example, by using this technique, even if we are unable to go to Iceland to do a shoot in its magnificent nature, by projecting such scenery on LED and shooting, we are able to shoot films which look like the subject is actually at the location. I was in the middle of creating such films, so I wanted to express a worldview of virtual and real melting together and reflected it in this piece.”
− Mr. Moriya’s message attached to the piece of「DREAMY – METAVERSE REAL」is, “even those things which we believed to be usual and mondain can change easily. The year 2021 is an introductive year to such times. The breakdown of stereotypes, release, self-love. And virtual unfolding a dream story. The present. A hope to shoot fashion films which capture such features of the present.” ※ Excerpt. Pieces expressing the present seen through the spread of the COVID-19 infection are introduced in the Official Site/Instagram.
【Key Visual：2】Production pursuing the “real” projected by virtuality
− The production process also differed from that of last time.
“Last time, we shot photographs, cut it into pieces and reconstructed into film, but this time it was the opposite. We felt we could express the theme better by shooting what we wanted to express in movie form and then creating the key visual accordingly, so we applied the worldview centered around the movie into the key visual.”
− In creating the piece, Mr. Moriya worked in cooperation with the FILM DIRECTOR, YUANN, active in the direction, graphics of a wide range of genres, including films of fashion and art. Mr. Moriya has spoken on the attractions of YUANN.
“Having created the film of ONITSUKA TIGER, VALENTINO, etc., YUANN is a director with a keen sense of fashion. YUANN’s style of applying phenomena happening at the shoot into the movie, as if transforming impulse into film, is attractive. At the shoot, we had prepared a sort of draft of what to shoot, but I felt it would turn out better if we shot the tension at the shoot. YUANN is a director who also has high editing skills, so we shot at the spur of the moment, while incorporating the mood at the shoot.”
− Past key visuals of this event had been open to the public mainly in the Official WEB site and at Official venues, but due to production by Mr. Moriya, it is now newly publicized using SNS.
“We’ve prepared a variety of visuals and movies expressing the world of ‘DREAMY’. The mood and air of the key visual and movies are better conveyed using SNS, so by introducing a variety of movies, one by one, step by step, I hope to induce interest from more people, along with raising the heat and anticipation towards the event.”
− In Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W, video transmission of shows of almost all participating brands will be available. By constructing a structure which will attract the eyes of as many people as possible, we hope to raise anticipation towards the event.
【Fashion】 Diversity is the keyword for future fashion
− Mr. Moriya, the parent who gave birth to imma, the virtual human attracting attention from industries of a variety of genres, starting with the fashion industry. In 2020, he gave birth to the virtual fashion designer, Asu, along with starting up Persona in cooperation with a team active in overseas collections and a certain apparel company presently strongly supported by the Z generation, launching the fashion brand, “NOWEAR”. In the eyes of Mr. Moriya, what is the future of the fashion industry like.
“These are already times of D2C. As a forerunner it had switched from an age of mass to individual, but from here, I think an age of community will arise. Now, it is a time in which people feel paying money is a drag. There are hardly any Z generation people who have experience buying CDs, and movies of all genres can be seen at a monthly rate. Especially in people in their 20’s, the hurdle against buying objects, paying money is getting higher and higher. On the other hand, there is an increase in formats in which people making things under unconventional rules can gain sympathy and be supported. This phenomenon is occurring due to the fact that now, it has become a time in which things without a background story and passion behind it, doesn’t sell. Nike is selling well by carrying out a first come-lottery style sales of some of the products, but I think this is very symbolic of today’s times. From here, I think the main theme is ‘how to create things that people can’t resist buying’ will become important in any industry.”
− Mr. Moriya states, due to the advances in SNS, there has been an increase in the number of communities in which “niche” is shared.
“I often say niche is just, and I think, markets are born depending on how niche a thing can be done, how passionately one can convey their strong love for that thing. To earn actual profit from that community requires a different vector. The structure of creating a real shop and developing from there has already broken down, and methods to sell have become much simpler than before. This can be said in the fashion industry also. I think Japan possesses irrefutable skills and sense not losing out to the world, so by diversifying methods on how to convey the attractions of products, I feel a spread will be born from there.”
− Mr. Moriya states, a new value is being added to the high-performance CG fashion/virtual fashion he handles also.
“Presently, the earth of virtual fashion is mainly games, but its value exists in the framework of fashion. If/when an avatar wearing new clothes catches the eyes of others, a different avatar then wears the same clothes. Such phenomena now exist. As can be seen with GUCCI participating in ZEPETO (a social application to create an avatar according to one’s preference and create a virtual world), it has grown into an awesome industry before anybody noticed. In light of such movements, I hope to create even newer things by incorporating the strengths of Japanese production into that of new realms.”
【Message】 A message to people coming in touch with “Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W”
− In continuance of last season, in Rakuten Fashion Week TOKYO 2021 A/W, more participating brands will be openly publicizing their show in movie transmissions. To end off, Mr. Moriya gave us a message.
“There will probably be people coming in touch with the event for the first time through seeing the key visual or movie, but I think this event is a place in which people with lumps of ‘niche’ in the fashion industry gather. And I think, finding the niche that best fits that person is a way to enjoy the event. The only thing I can do is create visuals, but if participants, past and present, feel that fashion week Tokyo is getting better from seeing this season’s key visual or movie, I would be happy.”
Interview by CRAING
Photography by Kenji Kaido