David Bowie’s creative genius even inspired works by a legend of the Japanese video game industry.

As the world struggles to come to terms with the loss of the extraordinarily talented David Bowie, people everywhere are taking comfort in shared stories of inspiration and encounters with the legendary musician. Bowie was well-loved in Japan too, where his immense creative genius inspired works from a number of local talents, including the acclaimed illustrator Yoshitaka Amano. Best known for his work on the Final Fantasy game series and the Vampire Hunter D novels, Amano once drew a series of twelve drawings inspired by Bowie’s character, the Thin White Duke.


▼ The illustrations, completed in 2004, depict Bowie and his wife, Iman, as otherworldly characters.




The pictures, commissioned for a magazine called V, became part of a work by English author Neil Gaiman. The dark, mysterious quality of the pictures led Gaiman to write a story about Bowie and Iman in a future New York.



Gaiman’s short story, The Return of the Thin White Duke, which the author describes as “unabashedly fan fiction”, is available to read on his website, complete with Amano’s haunting illustrations.


The Final Fantasy style is clearly evident in Amano’s illustrations of Bowie and the action scenes depicted in the series. It’s almost as if the rock legend could step into the role of Cloud himself.



Our world may feel emptier now without the Thin White Duke amongst us, but the artists inspired by his genius today will continue to sprinkle his stardust on works of art, music and fashion in the years to come. And if the legend were ever to appear in a Final Fantasy instalment in the future, we hope Amano is the illustrator that brings him to life.


Source: Kotaku Japan
Images: Yoshitaka Amano