Mio & Tsukushi, The OSAKA POP Official Character Design Contest

OSAKA POP, pop culture based tourism marketing campaign by Osaka Government Tourism Bureau.

OSAKA POP, pop culture based tourism marketing campaign by Osaka Government Tourism Bureau.

“OSAKA-POP” is a tourism campaign featuring Japanese pop culture such as manga, anime, and cosplay, which is conducted by Osaka Government Tourism Bureau. Dedicated for pop culture fans, the concept behind OSAKA POP itself is to proclaim that Osaka is POP city.

Minami (“South”) area of Osaka is saturated with Osaka’s ultra-pop culture. Have you ever taken a stroll from Amerika-mura (American Village) and Dotonbori to Nipponbashi? You will enjoy going for a walk while savoring delicious traditional cheap snacks called dagashi or dishes called “konamon” (“flour cuisine”), and you can buy all the comic books, animated DVDs, character figures, or POP culture fashion items you like. You can also indulge in Kamigata Rakugo (traditional Japanese comic storytelling as performed in the Kyoto-Osaka region), Manzai (a comic dialogue) or Yoshimoto Shin Kigeki (Yoshimoto New Comedy Troupe) to laugh until your sides ache. Of course, such “OSAKA-POP” can be seen in other areas, too. Osaka, as a gateway to Asia, consists of many ultra-unique and miracle towns- the fruit of a whole variety of combinations of Kawaii (“cute”) and Omoroi (“funny”). That’s the concept behind OSAKA POP.

As part of the tourism marketing campaign, worldwide call for entries to design OSAKA POP’s official character, Mio & Tsukushi”, has been made by Osaka Government Tourism Bureau. The competition seeks entries from around the world to design the “to-be” OSAKA-POP official characters “Mio & Tsukushi”. It asks fans, otakus, artists, designers, children, adults, amateurs and professionals alike to apply their imagination in a creative manner to design : “Mio & Tsukushi” a pair of girl characters fitted the image of Osaka The Grand Prize winning characters will make a debut in the “OSAKA-POP Festival (provisional name)” in late March 2014. The characters will act as the pop character to promote the charms of POP city Osaka worldwide.

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