sketch / image
  • 2014.09
for SANRIO × Pen

The instantly recognizable and one of the most famous characters of Japan, «Hello Kitty». Its fan base mainly consisted of women, but due partly to a collaboration with “Pen”, the men’s lifestyle magazine, men’s T-shirt designs were required. HELLO KITTY is a character that has many elements that “stimulates the right brain” to naturally induce the feeling of “cuteness”. On this basis we thought up a way to appeal to a new target group by “stimulating the left brain”.

01 Radiograph Kitty
The design features an x-ray image revealing Kitty’s skeleton, shedding light to her mysterious internals.

02 Math Kitty
Numbers and symbols associated with math formulas were used to spell “hello kitty”, with “=∞” simultaneously expressing “infinity” and “Kitty’s ribbon”.

03 Dictionary Kitty
The design features dictionary extracts with the definitions of “hello” and “kitty”, highlighted in pink and yellow to represent Kitty’s ribbon and nose respectively.

04 Architecture Kitty
Based on the sketches of Le Corbusier, known for his anthropometric “Modulor” system of proportions when designing architectural spaces, the “Kitty Modulor” design was made, featuring Kitty raising her right arm and, next to her, 5 apples to mark her height (Kitty is 5 apples tall). The resulting image appears as if the two figures are saying “hello!”.

05 Biology Kitty
The graphic uses insect specimens to form Kitty’s face, which emerges if one looks from a distance.
The red butterfly represents her ribbon, the black Japanese rhinoceros beetle and the stag beetle her eyes, and the scarabaeid beetle her nose.

06 Physics Kitty
The design serves as a reference for Kitty’s height as equal to 5 apples, which are placed next to a scale.

07 Art Kitty
Using Mondrian’s characteristic abstract compositions involving primary colours as a motif, one can somehow strangely discern Kitty’s face due to her distinctive colours.

08 Evolution Kitty
Since her debut in 1974, Hello Kitty has been subtly evolving through the years, incorporating design trends concerning her contours, three-dimensionality and facial features. The design draws attention to Kitty’s continuous evolution, by superimposing her on the classic illustration depicting human evolution.

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©'76,'15 SANRIO
Collaborator : abe, nsz
Photographer : Yuki Kawakami