♡ Profile

(Me with rakugo artist Katsura Kaishi. ^^ Photo ©Asahi Weekly)

The short story:

Name: Jamie Lynn Lano
Birthday: August 5, 1980 (Leo)
Etc: 6’0″(182cm) tall, Blood type B+
History: When I was a child, I moved between Washington and California states. I suppose that the Tri-cities is the closest that I have to a hometown. ^^ I’d always loved drawing. From the moment that I could hold a crayon, I was always doodling something. After graduating, I went to college in Arizona, where I graduated with a Bachelor’s in Animation. After that, I set straight out for Japan, the birthplace of anime. I’ve been there ever since, trying out life in The Big Mikan (Tokyo)!
Occupation: I write stories. 🙂 Technically, I am also on tv and a newspaper columnist, too! For a while, I drew manga as an assistant, though, and I want to do it again on my own!
Personality: Above anything, creative! I’m a dreamer and and artist♥
Warning: My vices are reality tv shows, especially Survivor, The Amazing Race, and Top Model. I just love seeing different kinds of people, and different kinds of personalities! ^^

The long story:

I am 2365478 feet tall, which means that I kind of stick out in Japan, where everyone comes up to my knee. I could be considered a little bit crazy, I suppose, but that’s just how I am. Unique. ^^

In all actuality, I’m just a smidge taller than Taylor Swift. Maybe it’s fate? ^^

I also have feet that are too large for most shoes, so I plan to one day run away to the beach and wear only sandals for the rest of my life! Don’t worry, I plan to maintain a residence in Tokyo, too! (*^-^*)

I loooooooooooove to read. From my childhood up until present day, a lot of things have changed, but the one thing that hasn’t is that I can usually be found with a good book in my hands. If I am not drawing, I am usually reading! I read anything and everything, but my ultimate favorites are two old classics: White Fang, and The Mysterious Island.

Nowadays, I can often be found walking along the streets of Tokyo with my nose buried in a kindle, putting myself at heightened risk of falling to my doom. Good thing that I’m a risk-taker! I also should thank Japan for not having too many potholes ♡

Because I spend most of my time reading or drawing, I am somewhat afraid of wearing off my butt! I will have to look into this!

In other news, generally I’m trying to find the best way to enjoy life, wandering through it, not only experiencing heartbreak and disappointments but also triumphs, love, excitement, and most of all, life!

Please come on my journey with me! (*^-^*)

(10,057 geeks have read this)


  • Donovan Allen

    Hello, my name is Donovan Allen. And I have a large question, How do I live in Japan? Like when I arrive to Japan get a homestay or go to a hotel get a job and then get enough money for an apartment in Tokyo. Cause I want to live in Japan so how do I start? Do I get an apartment first then a job cause I am so confused in this situation.

  • James

    Hi Jamie

    I thought that to be a mangaka you would have to either live or be there in person, but I now have a goal and an idea that I would like to work towards knowing I could have a shot even if the percentage is low. I will not give up as it is a burning passion of mine to become one of this field, aswell as trying out as an assisstant first to gain experience of my own. I have read your blog and have been fascinated by it and I am hopefully putting myself in the right way. I hope you and your ideas have great success and am glad your doing fine out there.

  • Dadha

    Hey Jamie! I only found your blog only today but have almost finished reading your living tall in Japan posts. I too study animation and would love to go to Japan to see for myself what it is like to live there. But I’m also pretty shy, like you were when you first went to Japan. I can actually relate to a lot of things you write about yourself. So thank you very much for taking the time to write about your experiences in Japan! You’ve given me the courage to make up my mind! I’m definitely going to Japan someday and things will work out just fine!

  • Dito

    I just want to say. My first thought when i saw you in your pictures, and also when i read bout your profile and personalities in your stories, you remind me of kuronuma in “kimi ni todoke”. Have u read the manga or watch the anime? I think u’re like kuronuma in person.. Lol.. In a positive way of course. What do u think?
    Sorry if I misread you, hehehe
    Oh yeah, u can count me as a fan! I like your stories, and your ‘adventures’, i’ll use that word if u may. Hope u read this comment, and hope i can see u and talk to u in person. See u jamie 😉

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      They actually get paid a page rate.. It is really not worth the amount of work, though, and if you have to have assistants, you will usually lose money every month. The real money comes when you publish collected volumes, though. Then, you have the chance to make a lot on royalties!

      I got to Hawaii by saving up and moving. It’s pretty boring. 😛

  • Chloe

    Hello, I just found this site today. I’m so happy to see someone pursuing becoming a mangaka who’s from America! I’m in the same boat, but I was always thought it was nearly impossible, that maybe manga from non-Japanese people wouldn’t be published. You’ve inspired me to keep practicing drawing and writing stories! I’m so happy i found this blog and will definitely continue to check up on it 🙂 But I do have a question, how were you able to get to Japan? I’m pursuing a bachelors degree now, but it seems it’s nearly impossible for an American to get a visa to go there and find work. If you don’t mind me asking, how were you able to do so?

    Thank you for making this blog!!

  • Rick

    I would like your opinion on something. Do you think that it’s important to learn how to draw the human anatomy or is it better to learn how to draw from books and wing it? What was your approach? Did you learn to drawn the human anatomy first?

  • Myrk

    your an Inspiration! I love your spirit (wish mine wasn’t so Easily broken)
    if you bother I have 3 questions about becoming an Manga Artist

    1. I don’t know anything about yen money so just for me to know what i’m risking how much is : 10,000 Yen

    2. if i want to submit a manga do i have to be in Japan or can i send it ?

    3. what kind of White out would you recomend ? the ones i buy just crumbles and just don’t cover that well

    My name is Fjóla I’m from Iceland I want to become a Manga Artist theres nothing else in the world that i’m so Passionate about <3

    ** sorry for my bad english

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      1. 10,000 yen is about $100 USD, depending on the exchange rate of the day.
      2. You can mail it.
      3. Try out different kinds until you find one that works for you.

      Good luck Fjola!

  • Riccardo

    Hi Jamie,

    The one question I would like to ask is did you have to master drawing the human anatomy or did you learn to draw manga or animé with out mastering drawing the human anatomy? What current project are you working on now?

  • Venisse

    OMG! i just found you and i can’t believe you’ve been blogging for so long. omg omg I’ve once wanted to be a manga artist but i dont know what happened >< I kind of gave it up because I thought "damn, I dont think a foreigner like me can do it" but now, seeing this, seeing your blog gave me that spark again and I know that in this generation nothing is impossible! OMG you don't know how excited I am at the momenttt THANK YOUUUUUU!!!!!!!!!!! Much Love x

  • Millie Gutierrez

    I just want to say that it’s so awesome how you are working in japan!! I want to do that when i grow up and also become a mangaka. The only thing I’m having troubles is in drawing the hands and drawing a guys body. Please give me advice!! Thank you!!

  • Reshma

    Oh Jamie u have given me an inspiration! I want to become a manga artist too,but unfortunately in India there r no manga schools or something.Ur blog is very informative. I’ll take help from here!

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      You can use any materials that you want to make comics! I use manga paper right now, but if I didn’t have that, I would use just regular bristol board, or computer paper even. 🙂

  • Rina

    Wow, I generally thought that most manga/anime fanatics gave up halfway to achieving their dreams until I saw your blog! Incredibly inspiring!<3 If this isn't too personal, may I ask how much you earned for being an assistant in the production of POT? Also, does going to an Animation/Illustration College improve your chances of succeeding?


    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      Thank you!! Mmmm, I earned about $2,000/month when I worked for Sensei full-time. 🙂

      I think that going to college isn’t necessary (unless you want to live in Japan, then you need to have a bachelor’s degree or get married to someone), but it can’t hut! More education is always preferable, and then you have other options if it doesn’t work out!

  • jaklumen

    Happy birthday, Jamie!

    Mine was two days ago– Jenn is so amused that I’m 40 now. Just wanted to let you know that we were talking about you, mentioned you to a cousin-in-law. She was wearing a Sailor Moon-themed T-shirt, so we figured it was relevant 😉

  • Shakil

    Hey Jamie-san, I’m still in my senior year and still learning Japanese but i just found your blog and I’m really amazed by you. So i just had to ask. I really wanna become a mangaka but the problem is i can’t draw very well so a i’ve been discouraged to do it. But i really really want it! So i was wondering can you give me some advice on wether I should continue or not? and if so, how can I find a illustrator for a partner?

    Thank you very much and sorry for my bad english V.V

  • Nicole

    Waaaaah! You’re so awesome!
    I love manga so much and I want to be a mangaka and live in Japan too like you (I live in the Philippines though so I guess its going to be hard to get used to the culture there)!
    But I’m having a hard time trying to learn Japanese. How to get around that?
    Anyways, I’ll be cheering for you!

  • Karen zheung

    Hi Jamie! I just found your blog recently. Your post are so interesting. I’ve always wanted to try living in japan for a while. Since you mentioned that you weren’t confident in your Japanese at first, how did you move there? (Assuming that you had to find a job, get an apartment and all those things tht you need to know Japanese for)

    Keep posting!

  • hikaritakishima11

    jamie!! u are really reallllly nice, i hope one day i can meet u, and maybe i can be ur assistant teehee \(^o^)/ i am good at drawing, im 16 and i live in a tiny little impossible to see on the globe btw, i live in grenada ha, in the caribbean.. someday i hope to go to school to the us, which ive never stepped foot out of my country, but its my dream to become something great with my passion.. everyone doubts me because im not the science or banker type, and all i do is……. draw draw and DRAW!! anyways, u rock, i hope u get ur dream and i will watch u fufil u dream! and u motivate me too.. T^T PEACE

  • Vanessa

    Hey, I just want to say that you sound awesome! I want to have a life like yours, I was born and raised in Washington and I haven’t left yet! >.< But I want to go to the Art Institute of Seattle and make my way to Japan just like you did! I love to draw, and I bet you get that a lot, but really its my only passion! I hope you succeed in doing what you want to do! ^^ And I think I've been sufficiently fan-girlish for now! ^^' heh heh.

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      You should do it!! I was mostly raised in Washington, only I went to the Art Institute of Phoenix instead of Seattle. 😀 It was a good change of scenery for me!

      And feel free to be as fangirly as you want! I am so, so fangirly over the people that I admire, and it makes me blush to think that anyone could think that highly of me. ^^

  • Al mcgriff

    I can’t draw that well but I’m practicing but I have great stir ties for a manga and lots of people say I have a amazing ability to create interesting stories,I’m a writer, and I was wondering do you think finding a partner like in bakuman is a bad idea?

  • Averina

    I want to be a mangaka and wish to go to Japan ^^
    I wish I can be like you, going to Japan, I mean.
    I’m from Indonesia and really really love mangas and drawing
    I hope one day I can become a mangaka 😀

    Sorry, My english is not so good. I’m not a native.

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      Hi James,

      I am moving to Hawaii because it seems like a great place to live! Always warm, sunshine, bright beaches, and a ton of different kinds of people. It sounds like paradise to me, so I’m aiming to find out! 😀

      As for manga, I haven’t quit at all! I am still drawing! If you mean my assistant manga job, you can read about why I quit that job in my assistant story (near the end, obviously). 😉 Happy reading!

      • Jessika

        So I just discovered your blog while looking for josei manga recommendations to read after finishing Nana (unfortunately I am still at a loss).

        I think you and I have a lot in common. I was born in WA and raised in northern CA, I have loved manga, anime and all other things Japanese for about 14 years (which being that I’m 22 is a majority of my life). (I also love to create characters and worlds, though I never complete them.) I recently got back from a semester abroad in the Kansai region and I am hovering awkwardly in expat land.

        I am going to university in Arizona, and I plan to do a National Student Exchange for my final semester so I can study at UH Manoa, because I have an unusual obsession with Hawaii and I want to continue to learn Japanese and start to learn Korean formally.

        I also like tv shows, mostly artistic ones like Project Runway, America’s Next Top Model, America’s Next Best Dance Crew, So You Think You Can Dance, What Not to Wear, Chopped, LA Ink, NY Ink, Ink Master, etc. I especially love shows that have to do with any sort of creative makeover, whether it be people or places (Extreme Makeover Home Edition, Restaurant Impossible).

        I’m happy to have found your blog.

        • Jamie Lynn Lano

          Hi there! Glad to hear from another fan of Nana!! There really is nothing like Nana out there. I’ve read so man series, but nothing to compare to Nana. If only Yazawa-sensei would get better and put something out for all of us fans who are still waiting! ToT Her earlier mangas Paradise Kiss and Kagen no Tsuki both have sort of similar feels to them, but are not the same at all. Same for Gokinjo Monogatari.

          It’s weird how much we have in common, but you’re right! We’ve even liked anime and manga for about the same amount of time (17 years for me)! I’m glad that you found me, too!! I look forward to getting to know you through the comments, and I hope that we run into each other someday!

          • Jessika

            There’s been a rumor that she wrote a short Junko’s room comic I think in January of this year, possibly to test the waters and see if she can return to her fan base. I really hope this means something in terms of Nana, otherwise I may have to try my best to make a fan doujin! I’m so obsessed! And you’re right even Ai Yazawa’s other works pale in comparison to Nana. I tried to reread Paradise Kiss and “Caroline” was not nearly as lovable or relateable to me as Hachi. Ahh I guess I’ll just draw a ton of fan art. (Soz just had to word vomit about Nana a little xP). Maybe I can share my fan art with you when I finish it! By the way I wanted to mention that just reading your blog somehow inspired me to draw almost immediately, so thanks for the inspiration!

          • Jamie Lynn Lano

            I’m not sure about this year, but early 2013 she did a Junko’s Room! 😀 I was soooooooo excited that I ran out and bought Cookie, and then waited impatiently for the next month, and……. nothing. Absolutely nothing. ToT It was a tragedy. I thought for sure that she was going to start drawing Nana again. It’s such a tragedy, since it was obviously nearing the end of the story, and she left off on such a cliffhanger. *cries*

            And yes, please share your art with me! I’ve often thought that if the authors don’t want to do it, someone should continue their series for them. Both Nana and Hunter x Hunter need to stop being on hiatus. I mean, the mangaka for Itazura na Kiss was killed in an accident before she finished the story, but her husband let the anime staff write their own ending. At least it had an ending. ToT

  • Linda

    Hi Jamie! First I really want to say that.. i want to be like you! Omg bcoming the assistant for prince of tennis? Its likee my dream job! I fell in love for anime because of Prince of Tennis. Its been 10 years I become the BIGGEST fan of PoT since Im just 3rd grade in elementary school and although now I have many another favourite mangas, PoT still is my number one favourite!

    Soo.. If you have time, or if you want.. Can you give me the basic tutorial how to PoT drawing style? Im good in duplicating any drawings. But now I want to draw using professional mangaka technique. Can you give me basic step how to draw the full-body character from rought draft to final picture? Ive searched for PoT drawing tutorial on internet but I cant find anything.

    Thank you so much!! You are the only “staf of PoT” that I can contact to. Also if you can, please sent my greeting to Takeshi Konomi sensei! Its greeting from Indonesia fans (yes Im from indonesia!)! I never sent any fan email because it is too expensive and Im still on college in USA now (my parents will mad at me if they found out I spend my money for this kind of thing >.v<

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      Hi, Linda!

      I’m afraid that if you want to draw in Konomi-sensei’s style, the only way is to get him to teach you himself! But it’s better for artists to have their own styles, I think. 🙂

      As for basic drawing techniques, you should take a life drawing class, or sketch from life. Try to draw the people around you, or on tv if you don’t have anyone.

      • Linda

        Thank you so much for your fast reply 😀

        Yeah now Im practicing drawing by watching people’s moves on videos. Its kinda difficult but it really helps my drawing a lot. Yes I know it is better to have my own style, but I think at first I want to learn Konomi sensei’s technique and then I will apply it to my drawing using my own styles. I wish I can be one of his student in the future fuuu :/ I reallyreally want to see how Konomi sensei drawing.

        Anyway, once again thank you so much! Good luck and wish you all th best !!

  • Jalen

    I’m glad I found this, too.
    I want to become a mangaka in Japan, but I am usually discouraged… but now I found someone similar. (^o^)/
    If you’d allow, can I show you some of my work?

  • Jenuel Ganawed

    …. hallow Jamieism,, wow, I dont know if I pronounced it correct.. hehe I yeah, so you are in a journey for becoming a mangaka?,,, can I come? I mean can I join with, Im actually a boy, and i live here in philippines, Im about 17 years old,, I also love reading and drawing,, I hope I will also become a great manga artist, I will do all my best with guts to go through those walls….

    • Jamie Lynn Lano

      Hallow Jenuel! Any pronunciation is fine with me. 🙂

      Sure, of course you can join in!! Anyone is welcome– in fact, I’d be happy if everyone everywhere took up drawing and tried to tell their stories!

      • Jenuel Ganawed

        thank you verry much,,,, so sis, can you give me some tips that you have learned that might help me to improve? any tips? thank you verry much!!!! SIS!!!!

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