Everything from developing concepts to advising on how print should appear on Clarks shoes and bags.
I studied Fashion Design at the prestigious Bunka Fashion College in Tokyo. While I was studying, hip hop hit Japan in a big way and I spent a lot of my spare time DJing at one of Tokyo's hottest clubs. This brought me close to some really influential fashion figures and they commissioned me to do illustrations for their magazines.
When I left college, I felt like a needed a change of direction. I'd always been interested in fly fishing and decided to make my hobby my career and spent the next four years teaching fly fishing in Tokyo. It became my passion. I wanted to know everything I could about it and one day stumbled across an article about Coco Chanel fly fishing with the famous hotel owner, Charles Ritz. I was hugely inspired by Ritz, so much so that I travelled all the way to Paris to visit a fishing shop where he was giving a book talk. And that led to my next life changing decision – a permanent move to France where, as well fishing, I returned to the world of fashion and began designing and printing t-shirts for a local couture label.
I joined the company three years ago and since then my knowledge of fashion has led to me working across both the marketing and product teams.
In France I met the woman who would become my wife. She's English, from Somerset, a connection that eventually led me to Clarks and the role of senior designer in marketing. I joined the company three years ago and since then my knowledge of fashion has led to me working across both the marketing and product teams.
This fits perfectly with Jason's vision to merge everyone into one brand team. I now manage the Concept Design Team and provide creative direction for the Clarks brand as a whole. This includes everything from developing concepts - like the collaboration project with the Victoria & Albert Museum - to advising the product team on how print should appear on Clarks shoes and bags.
Atsushi, Concept Design Manager.