Mainichi Shinbun recently published the story of a man who used his (admittedly good) drawing skills in the wrong way. Unemployed and desperate, he took his pen to action and created colored autographs of famous mangaka and anime directors, from Hayao Miyazaki to Makoto Shinkai! He then auctioned the autographs on online sites similar to Ebay.
Okayama Prefectural Police released photos of the faked autographs they found in the house of the 32-year-old man:
You can see that the ‘artist’ copied many classics like Doraemon (Fujiko F. Fujio) Anpanman (Takashi Yanase) Black Jack (Osamu Tezuka) Naruto (Masashi Kishimoto), Dr. Slump and Dragon Ball (Akira Toriyama).
If you are wondering why the man is not taking his talents to work for a company that makes the works he is trying to copy, the anime and manga industry is a particularly harsh one, even by Japanese standards. Being a mangaka or an animator can mean 6-day work weeks for 10 hours a day, sometimes with mediocre pay.
On a more positive note, the arrest was made by the Anti-Cyber Crime Section that was established to go after cases like this. Ghost in the Shell is one step closer.