Tsutomu Tojo

Good in Web Design.

About Tsutomu Tojo

ZICCA Design is a Japanese design firm. It incorporates the Japanese philosophy of Zen into its design and conveys a simple and powerful message to the user. Then, focusing on corporate and regional branding and website design, we do various designs to convey the appeal of clients, such as brochures, posters, video works, and logos. ZICCA Design is committed to providing long-loved designs to many users around the world with a commitment to quality and unwavering quality in Japan.

  • Winner of Web Design Award.
  • Specialized in Web Design.
  • Original Design.
  • Creative, Diligent and Innovative.
  • All Designs
  • Web
Another Japan Yamagata Website

Another Japan Yamagata Website

Web Design


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Interview with Tsutomu Tojo

Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
I don't remember how I became a designer. Maybe I think it was a natural process to become a designer.
Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
ZICCA Design is a Japanese design firm. It incorporates the Japanese philosophy of Zen into its design and conveys a simple and powerful message to the user. Then, focusing on corporate and regional branding and website design, we do various designs to convey the appeal of clients, such as brochures, posters, video works, and logos.
What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
I really like the gum “XYLITOL" gum packaging design. The package conveys all of the product. The color of the package lets you imagine the taste, the mark tells you that it is a good product for your teeth, and the product name is very easy to understand. I feel that it is one of the completed designs.
Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
I always think that the design is natural. Do you really need the picture? Is the decoration really needed? If you ignore these and design, it will be very unnatural and bad design.
What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
Basically, I ignore my emotions during design. In many cases, I become a user and think about how I feel when I look at a design.
What makes a design successful?
I think it is necessary to succeed in thinking thoroughly. It's important to think deeply about what the user wants, whether it's the design they are happy with or not.
When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
I first look at how to get the margins. Good design comes with calculated margins.
How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
I think that more parts will be left to AI. By letting AI take care of our designers, they can spend their time thinking about a really easy-to-use UI.
Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
In all my design work, I get inspiration from the Japanese “Zen Spirit”. Also, various Zen-influenced Japanese cultures are very creative, profound and a source of my inspiration.
How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What's your approach to design?
My design style is "Zen style design". The Japanese Zen philosophy is incorporated into the design to convey a simple, elegant and powerful message to the user.
Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
I live in Japan. Japanese culture is a culture that values the attention to detail. It is a very important element for design. Born and raised in Japan, I have acquired a sense of nature and attention to detail. I think that is my personality as a designer. I am grateful to my hometown of Japan and its culture.
What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
Tell me what you think. From there, the designer finds the essence and puts together the main points. And it's best to let the designer completely decide how to convey it. We are professionals who have been practicing and practicing for years what they feel when they see them. Incorporating client preferences in design is not a good idea. I think there is no doubt about choosing a good designer by choosing a designer who has won the A'Design Award.
From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
The negatives of being a designer is that you can't help but worry about the kerning on the street signs. On the positives side, we won the A'Design Award!
What skills are most important for a designer?
Skills of listening to the client and seeing the essence are important.
Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
I mainly use Adobe products. I also read "Daniel Kahneman Thinking, Fast and Slow" over and over again.
Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
I will strictly adhere to the deadline, and will not manage the time very carefully.
Who are some of your clients?
Companies and public bodies and etc.. There are relatively many clients related to tourism.
What are your future plans? What is next for you?
Until now, I used to work in Japan, so it would be best if I could work in various countries around the world!

Extended Interview with Tsutomu Tojo

Could you please tell us a bit about your design background and education?
I dropped out of college. After all, I started working for a design company and learned design.
What motivates you to design in general, why did you become a designer?
I don't remember how I became a designer. Maybe I think it was a natural process to become a designer.
What do you design, what type of designs do you wish to design more of?
Focusing on corporate and regional branding and website design, we do various designs to convey the appeal of clients, such as brochures, posters, video works, and logos.
What makes a good design a really good design, how do you evaluate good design?
I first look at how to get the margins. Good design comes with calculated margins.
What is the value of good design? Why should everyone invest in good design?
Good design exists to convey the goodness of a company, product, or service. That's great value for everyone. Good design conveys the appeal of a company or product rather than asserting itself.
What is the dream project you haven’t yet had time to realize?
If I have the time and opportunity, I want to design a whole small town. It would be great if we could design everything such as houses, stores, landscapes, infrastructure, and welfare.
What are your favorite designs by other designers, why do you like them?
I really like the “XYLITOL" gum packaging design. The package conveys all of the product. The color of the package lets you imagine the taste, the mark tells you that it is a good product for your teeth, and the product name is very easy to understand. I feel that it is one of the completed designs.
What is your greatest design, which aspects of that design makes you think it is great?
This is the website of "Another Japan Yamagata" which won the A'Design Award Bronze. This site is a website created for travelers from overseas at the request of a client (a Japanese hotel group company). It is the best example of success that was able to fulfill the client's wish by winning the award at the award outside Japan and getting attention.
What helped you to become a great designer?
I did a lots and lots and lots of design work. And I did lots and lots and lots of thinking for design.
What’s your next design project, what should we expect from you in future?
Until now, I used to work in Japan, so it would be best if I could work in various countries around the world!
What are you currently working on that you are especially excited about?
Now I'm working on a video. I plan to open a channel on youtube soon.
What would you like to see changed in design industry in the coming years?
I think that more parts will be left to AI. By letting AI take care of our designers, they can spend their time thinking about a really easy-to-use UI.
When you have a new design project, where do you start?
I will interview the client first when the project starts. I can't even think of a concept without knowing the thoughts and feelings of the client.
What is your life motto as a designer?
Don't add unnecessary things, Don't omit necessary things. Always natural. This is the Japanese Zen philosophy.
Do you think design sets the trends or trends set the designs?
Design sets the trends first, then trends set the designs. In other words, pioneers are always great.
Which books you read had the most effect on your design?
I read "Daniel Kahneman Thinking, Fast and Slow" over and over again. This book contains much of the essential knowledge of design, such as cognitive psychology and behavioral economics.
Irrelative of time and space, who you would want to meet, talk and discuss with?
Jimi Hendrix!!! and Sen no rikyu. Sen no rikiyu is a famous tea master during the Azuchi-momoyama period, who invented Wabi-cha,” which became the origin of modern tea ceremony. It is the origin of all Japanese culture.
How do you feel about all the awards and recognition you had, is it hard to be famous?
It's a great honor to be recognized, but it's just one indicator. And being recognized is a result, not a goal in itself.

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