Clip Studio Paint Artist: Cliven Zu AKA @clivenzu
Contact Graphixly @
How did you become an artist?
My introduction to art was when I was about 9-10 years old. I watched a movie called Naruto: ninja clash in the land of snow and I remembered a climactic scene where Naruto used rainbow Rasengan on the villain to save the day. This scene was so impactful that it got me into anime which in turn heavily inspired me to start drawing. I recall trying to redraw characters from Naruto like Sakura, Sasuke, Ino etc. Eventually I transitioned into wanting to create my own characters and have my own style.
Years later when Instagram started to become a thing. I saw many amazing artists post their artwork and I wanted to do the same. Creating an art account made me realize how much I enjoyed sharing my art with others. I feel like it also helped me improve tons and opened so many opportunities to meet new people around the world. That being said I give credit to all the support everyone has shown me over the years. Without them I wouldn’t have developed into the artist I was today.
Where do you get inspiration?
Initially it was Anime/manga that inspired me the most but nowadays I’m really in love with video games. People can do some incredible things with this medium. I find myself very inspired by the worlds, characters, environments, music and lore. To name a few that I currently enjoy: Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy X & VII and Hollow Knight.
I also find inspiration in other artist’s works, photography accounts, Pinterest and random images I come across here and there.
What’s your hardware setup?
I use a refurbished IMac, 10.5 inch IPad Pro and the Artist 22R Pro graphic tablet.
What do you like best about Clip Studio Paint?
The interface. It’s very artist friendly compared to all the other art programs I’ve tried. Every part pop’s out so I can customize where I want my brushes, settings and colour wheel to be. The icons are large so I’m not struggling to press tiny buttons also the brush engine is superb and blends really well with other colours. Of course this can be found in other programs such as Photoshop but I find Clip Studio’s settings to be much more accommodating to an artist's needs.
I also really love the 3d options. Occasionally if I’m stuck on a pose I would model it out and use it for reference.
How long does it take you to make a single illustration?
I take roughly 5-14 hours depending on how complex/ familiar I am with whatever I am painting. Although most of those hours go into my indecisiveness. Example: Should I do 3% overlay or 4% hmmmmmm.
Would you consider Clip Studio Paint an industry tool?
Yes! It has pretty much everything an artist needs to create professional comics and illustrations. I’ve seen many well established professionals use Clip studio to create their works and the amazing quality really shows how powerful this tool can be.
Where can we follow your work?
*** Zu is doing a #Giveaway with us! Reach the post on Instagram, follow @clivenzu, follow @graphixly and leave a comment. Winners of Clip Studio Paint Pro will be announced on June 2, good luck! ***
I will need to see my favorite artists’ work! sometimes digging their instagram old posts. Seeing their improvement from month to month, year to year .. They keep changing! It helps me find my motivation back not to stop practicing because I won’t get anywhere if I don’t do anything.