INTERVIEW: Collateral Damage Studios

Fanart and illustrations have become a ritual at Anime Trending each year. We celebrate the best anime each year has to offer. With that, we’re excited to hire and work closely with illustrators and groups like Collateral Damage Studios, based in Singapore. We interviewed them in 2019 after commissioning artwork for our staff. They recently illustrated K-On, the winner of our Anime Trending Decade Awards. 

How did you start drawing?

WaHa: I started as a hobby like most of us here. Eventually when I graduated, I got the chance to join CDS. One of the founding members recommended me to work there while working as a software tester for animation software and development at the local university.

How did you tackle different projects given as resources vary from each one?

I think you guys gave very good descriptions and it’s quite clear compared to some others. Some people would request “we want this and go for it” and we tackle it according to how we interpret it. Sometimes the clients say “this is not what we wanted.” And at that point in time, they can actually give us specific examples, but sometimes we wonder why they didn’t do that from the start!

For each project, how did you conceptualize what to draw? Is there a particular style you gravitate towards?

Because we are somewhat an Japanese-influenced anime kind of studio, I would assume that most of the clients that came to us will want something along those lines if they didn’t specify beforehand. Sometimes the client clearly tells us what they want and givesgive us examples of the style that they want to tackle. We’ll go in that direction instead.


Who was the most difficult staff art (from Anime Trending) to work on?

I wouldn’t say the most difficult but the most complicated one was probably Spookybot (Jack). He was quite specific with what he wanted. so it wasn’t that difficult. He wanted to combine different elements, right? So I had to take a blank shot at it, but I’m glad that he liked it.


Anyone that you enjoyed or had the most fun drawing?

Probably Diyo (James)? It was an interesting concept. He really likes trains, huh?

What kind of software or is your equipment and software? 

I was using Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. I mainly use PainTool SAI and sometimes Clips Studio.


What is your favorite thing to draw and color?

Cute things, such as girl characters, animals, or mascots. 

What are you inspired by or like to draw? This includes franchises or tiger artists. 

I’m into Cygames right now in general, especially Granblue Fantasy. I find the artwork very beautiful.


Or follow the #wahawednesday hashtag on Twitter / Instagram


How did you start drawing? 

Devin: I started drawing or coloring seriously when I was in secondary school at around 13. But before that, I doodled robots because people were asking me “can you draw a robot for me?” I started seriously when I was in secondary school and started drawing anime girls in general.

After that I progressed into ITE (Institute of Technical Education) digital animation, 2D animation and some concept art and eventually 3D. After all that, I got an internship at CDS working on the line art and coloring of the sketches.

What equipment do you use? 

I use the Wacom Intuos – Pentum. 


Who was the most difficult staff art (from Anime Trending) to work on? 

The most difficult and fun one was Jack’s chibi art. 


What do you personally enjoy drawing? 

Personally, I like to draw fan art and sometimes create my own original characters. And robots! Always robots.


What are you inspired by or like to draw? This includes franchises or tiger artists. 

I guess Re:Zero. My favorite character is Rem. 



How did you both start drawing? 

Usanekorin: I love drawing since I was young and kept drawing since then 

Desti: I would doodle during class? *laugh*


What equipment do you typically use?

Usanekorin: I use the Intuos 4 and Adobe Photoshop 

Desti: I use Intuos Pro and Clip Studio

Do you have any favorite things you guys enjoy drawing such as characters? 

Usenakorin: I enjoy drawing characters with backgrounds and I’m really into Granblue Fantasy right now. 

Desti: Cute characters, I guess? For characters, I enjoy drawing Hatsune Miku.

Any particular artists or franchises you enjoy or inspired by? 

Usanekorin: Besides Granblue Fantasy, I’d say Azur Lane and Fate/Grand Order. For artists, I’m inspired by Kawaci and Rei17. 

Desti: For artists, I’m inspired by Rella (@Rellakinoko). The atmosphere of the art is really nice. She illustrated some of the official Vocaloids artwork that I enjoy. Another artist is Redjuice. I attended one of his live drawing sessions and he a drew a character in an hour which was amazing. 


Usanekorin Twitter:
Desti Instagram:

Thank you again to Collateral Damage Studios for the opportunity. You can check them out here.

Leave a Comment!

Leave a Reply