Rice paddy cartoons celebrate Japanese artist

The Japanese village of Inakadate transforms its rice paddies into a visual spectacle each year. This year, the intricate rice art celebrates the 90th anniversary of innovative manga artist Osamu Tezuka. The huge rice paddy art is created by using nine different coloured varieties of rice plants. Some of Mr Tezuka’s most famous characters, such as Astro Boy, Black Jack and Kimba the White Lion, have been created in the rice.

Manga is the Japanese word used to refer to comics or cartoons. Mr Tezuka was a prominent and innovative artist, animator and film producer in this style. He is referred to as a father-like figure for the manga genre and often considered to be the Japanese equivalent of Walt Disney. New Treasure Island, published in 1947 when Mr Tezuka was a 19-year-old medical student, is considered to be his debut work.

He later created other long-lasting manga such as Astro Boy, Princess Knight and Jungle Emperor Leo. Mr Tezuka died of stomach cancer in 1989. His death had a big impact on the Japanese public and other manga artists. Different varieties of rice were planted in June. As the rice has grown, the fields have been transformed. The residents of Inakadate live-stream their rice paddies and post daily photos.

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