Manga Comics and Characters

Starting with his first comic "Poku-Chan", Katsudi created multiple characters such as "Kurukuru Kurumi-chan", "Mysterious Clover" and "Pichiko and Chākō". As a pioneer in the character business he also started producing stationary items and small goods with his illustrations, and playing a role as a commercial designer.

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Kurumichan

Kurukuru Kurumichan (クルミちゃん) was first published in 1938 as a comic and immediately became an iconic character among young girls. She is probably the first "kawaii" character that ever existed in Japan.
Starting out as a girl in her early teens, Kurumichan developed into a typical manga style character with a large, almost square head and small body and playful and humorous personality after WWII.
The Kurumi-chan comic series was published for 35 years in total and the character was featured on various paper goods and toys.

Hāmu and Monī

Hāmu and Monī (ハームとモニー) were created as characters for baby tableware produced by the company Combi. As the characters presented a girl (Hāmu) and a boy (Monī), the tableware could be used by boys and girls.
The tableware with illustrations of the two adorable babies playing became so popular, that between 1960 and 1970 almost every child in Japan grew up with it.

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The Mysterious Clover

In 1934, Matsumoto drew his first full-fledged manga. The Mysterious Clover (?(なぞ)のクローバー, (Nazo) no kurōbā) is a 16-page story of a young girl freeing the poor villagers and farmers from the cruel and mercenary nobles.

The booklet came as a premium in the April issue of Shōjo no Tomo, twice the size of the magazine. It is considered one of the first mangas in Japan using varying perspecitves, including bird's-eye views, and variations in the size of panels.

Pichiko and Chākō

Pichiko and Chākō (ピチ子とチャー公) is a manga series that was first published in Shōjo no Tomo in 1933 and ran for 12 years. The stories are about the eventful lives of a young, energetic, intelligent girl and her brother.
Pichiko and Chākō's Summer by the Lake was a 48 page booklet in addition to the August issue of Shōjo no Tomo in 1934 that was very expressive and animation-like in style. For example, you can see a series of frames of Pichiko climbing a tree, resembling an animation.

Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake Cover
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - Intro
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - P32-33
Pichiko To Chakoo - Camping - Cover
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Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake Cover
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - Intro
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - P32-33
Pichiko To Chakoo - Camping - Cover
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Three Chocolate Bars (A summer in the Mountain)

Published as an add-on to Shojo no Tomo in August 1934, A Summer in the Mountains (板チョコ三人組み(お山の一夏)) is about three friends on their adventurous camping trip. The animation-style manga is rich in speed and expressiveness.

Poku-chan

Poku-chan (ポクちゃん) was first published in 1930 in the magazine Shōjo Gahō (少女画報, "Girls' Illustrated"). The manga series is about the daily life of an energetic little Chinese girl named Poku. The very stylized comic continued to be published in the magazine until 1930.

It is said that Fuichin-san, a character created by Toshiko Ueda, who was one of Katsudi's apprentices, was inspired by Poku-chan.

Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake Cover
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - Intro
Pichiko To Chakoo - One Summer At The Lake - P32-33
Pichiko To Chakoo - Camping - Cover
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