Explanation of Mrs. Hiiragi-Aoi

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This page is going to introduce Ms. Hiiragi Aoi, the author of theoriginal story of "The Cat Returns".

Shizuku Tsukishima
(drawn by "Aimi")
About Hiiragi Aoi

Ms. Hiiragi Aoi is one of typical manga artists for the girls' comic magazine 'Ribbon'. She started drawing and contributing her manga around the time when she was in the first year of junior high school. But with no chances to debut, she went into another job after she graduated from juniorcollege. But she could not give up her dream and continued drawing andcontributing manga as she worked, and at last she debuted in 1984. It wasthe debut after the long and hard ways she had repeated contribution forseven years since her junior high school days. After the debut, she continuedworking at an office for a while as she drew manga, and quit the officeto make manga her full-time job.

'Hoshi no Hitomi no Shiruetto' (The Silhouette of the Star Iris), which became her first serial work, won a tremendous following of fans, and its popularity was so great that it was said the work was the main source toraise the official number of copies of 'Ribbon' from two million to 2.5million. After that, she energetically presented other serial works like'Mimi o Sumaseba' (Whisper of the Heart), 'Gin'iro no Haamonii' (Silver Harmony), 'STEP', 'Peppermint Graffiti', and others, and they won popularity. In1995, Studio Ghibli produced an animation film based on the story of her'Whisper of the Heart', and all generations in Japan and abroad came to knowher as the author of the movie's original story.

Since 1997 until now, she has moved her platform for presentation to 'Margaret'and 'Bouquet', and widen it to the nursing information magazine 'HUG' (Gakken)to draw a documentary nursing comics based on her own experiences about raisingchildren, and so on. On 2002, she presented a newly drawn comic book 'Baron,the Cat Baron', which is the original story for the Studio Ghibli productionfilm 'The Cat Returns'.

Born in 1962 at Tochigi Prefecture, now she is a manga artist and a mother who is raising two children.

Special Thanks: Translated by USHIRO Satoshi

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