Kibou – Artist Spotlight: Kita Senri (北千里)

January 22, 2009


Hi, it’s me again! Are you getting annoyed by my posts yet?! Anyways, this is another series of features that I came up with…I’ve had this idea for a long time, but I’ve been a little lazy in committing to it, so I haven’t really done one until now. Hopefully these are kind of fun to read/discover, since obscure things+people are awesome, but no guarantees that this won’t be tl;dr!

Our first nifty artist of the week is Kita Senri! Never heard of him/her? Well, here’s your chance to see why she/he is pretty awesome! Click on the pictures to see the images in their full glory!

Scribble top image

Click on the image to see what that woman is holding!

Background: Kita Senri (北千里) lives in the Kansai region of Japan. Started out as a designer and dotter, and then moved on to doing illustrations and freelance work. Uses the name “Kita Senri” for illustration-related work, and uses “Kuro Maguro” (black tuna) as an internet handle. His/Her dream is to live a leisurely life. His/her gender is undisclosed, but for some reason I’ve always thought s/he was a she. Hmm…

Path of Radiance, complete with 3 different hair colours!

Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, complete with 3 different hair colours!

Works: Known most notably for his/her contributions as an illustrator for the Samurai Shodown and Fire Emblem series. I have yet to find her works elsewhere, so I’m assuming that these are the only ones s/he has worked on.

Here, have a random miko. Original work by Kita Senri.

Here, have a random miko. Original work by Kita Senri.

Games illustrated for:

Samurai Shodown (aka Samurai Spirits)
– Samurai Shodown 64: Warriors Rage (SAMURAI SPIRITS 2 アスラ斬魔伝)
– SAMURAI SHODOWN WARRIORS RAGE (剣客異聞録 甦りし蒼紅の刃 サムライスピリッツ新章)
– Manager Yagyuu (柳生課長) Spinoff short story illustrations based on the SS character.

Fire Emblem
– Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance (ファイアーエムブレム 蒼炎の軌跡)
– Fire Emblem: Dawn of Radiance (ファイアーエムブレム 暁の女神)

A YAGYUU appeared! YAGYUU used SMILE. It's super weird!

A HAOHMARU appeared! HAOHMARU used SMILE. It's super weird!


Character Design – His/her character designs for Fire Emblem are varied, but sometimes border on generic. Recurring design features are wispy, shiny, and sometimes long hair, as well as detailed accessories on outfits. The eyes that he/she draws are sometimes in an anime-style, which are usually the case for the teenage-ish boys and girls, but Kita Senri can also draw more realistic ones for the serious, mature characters. Senri is also capable of drawing not only cute girls and boys, but also manly men! A quality that is rare for an illustrator of the anime style. The last thing I should note is that Senri has a very good idea of anatomy and how the human body is proportioned. There are rarely any awkward poses, and the body types look very plausible. (ie. no impossibly thin waists or stick legs)

Characteristic wispy hair, big eyes, cute smile...

Characteristic wispy hair, big eyes, cute smile...

Who knew that someone kissing leaves could look so pretty?

Who knew that someone kissing leaves could look so pretty?

Colours – They are marked by bold outlines with soft colouring. These outlines are rarely solid black, if ever, and are always the colour of whatever complements the other colours used in the picture. The colours he/she uses are often organic (natural browns, reds), but he/she can bring out fresher colours as well.

Manly Tibarn is manly..

Manly Tibarn is manly..

...and womanly Petrine is womanly?

and womanly Petrine is womanly!

Style – The style is a balance between fantasy and realism: the shading is always accurate and natural-looking, but the eyes are usually big (especially on female characters) and the costumes are elaborate and flowing. Senri’s style is easily recognizable due to the details in the hair, the soft, balanced colouring, and the bold outlines.

Nakoruru being all smiley. Must be the flowers.

Nakoruru being all smiley. Must be the flowers.

Nephenee looking all cool despite having a country girl accent.

Nephenee looking all cool despite having a country girl accent.

A small note: Kita Senri’s style for Manager Yagyuu is COMPLETELY different from his/her usual style, so if I didn’t do research about it, I wouldn’t have recognized it either..

Scribble (Website)
Samurai Shodown Illustrations
Manager Yagyuu

Aaaaaaaand that’s all for today, ladies and gentlemen! I’ll be back with a post laterish about REAL gaems. Until then, ciao..?! (Don’t miss me too much..)



  1. HAOMARU used WARM LAUGH. Seijika is paralyzed (from fear)!

    I like the coloring/shading of them all. Good stuff. Crazy to see how many game and such have the same artist drawing for them. o_O

  2. HAOMARU used PEARLY WHITES. Mach is unaffected

    Rather interesting segment you got here. 🙂

    And his smile ain’t THAT scary. <_<

  3. Just awkward.

    Reminds me of Detective Gumshoe, actually.

  4. え、カレーかよwww

    Kita Senri has also done artwork for some SNK vs. Capcom games. Can’t remember if they also did the illustrations for Capcom Fighting Jam/Evolution.

  5. Oh god, Capcom Fighting Evolution. That game was horrible.

  6. Fire Emblem always has good art. I’m going to reserve Shadow Dragon for the DS at Gamestop so I can get this art cell:

    Masamune Shirow did the artwork for the upcoming game.

  7. I always admired the concept art from Fire Emblem… now I know who my artistic idol is. 🙂

  8. I agree, she is very good at what she does! And yes, they are a SHE. I cannot believe she does all that work on photoshop with only those pencil scans, one of my favorite artists for sure! Thank you for the insight on her! ^_^

  9. these pictures are the best pictures i have ever seen

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