One of the artbooks that I picked up during my trip to Japan was “Lily White” by Murakami Suigun (村上水軍). Honestly, I’d never heard of Lily White or Murakami Suigun before picking up this book. I was actually getting a copy of E☆2 Girls Girls Girls! volume 5 (which I will review eventually), when I noticed this book beside it. I know people say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but in Japan all artbooks are wrapped in plastic so that’s all you have to go by, and I just loved the cover of this book. Figuring that there would be more illustrations like the one on the cover, I decided to buy it for 2600 yen. Apparently, Murakami Suigun is a popular artist, having been illustrating for several years. He also publishes a series called Murakami Suigun’s Fetishistic Illustrations, otherwise shorted to F-ism. As of this writing, there are 14 volumes out, and they seem to mostly depict maids, but also cover other themes like miko and schoolgirls (all in bondage positions, hence the title).
Back to Lily White, the book is split into three sections: Pasocom Paradise Works, Original Design Works, and Games & Copyright Works. The titles of the sections are pretty self-explanatory, pasocom is short for personal computer and features illustrations done on the computer, including the rough sketches and line art. The games and copyright section contains illustrations for titles that Murakami Suigun has worked on such as Silvery White, and eroge. There are over 130 pages of illustrations and they’re all of female characters. Here are some pages that I picked out from the book:
The art style is very clean, but also very detailed. As you can see from the pictures, Murakami Suigun illustrates all sorts of girls, from regular girls, to maids, and cool girls with swords. My favourite though, would have to be the “dark” illustrations like the ones in image 10 and 11. The contrast between the dark background and the white skin/clothing really make them stand out. In all of the illustrations, the girls are the central focus, with no fancy backgrounds to distract viewers.
Besides the types of illustrations I’ve shown above, there are also two illustrations with bare oppai and several pages of bondage, so it might not be the best thing to flip through in public.
At the back of a book is a small section with a step-by-step walkthrough on how Murakami Suigun illustrated the cover image. It’s all in Japanese though, so that didn’t do me much good, but I was still very impressed with everything else in Lily White. Considering the quality and quantity of the illustrations, this was probably the best impulse buy I made during my whole trip.