Creative Mindset Series

A review of work by Tatsuya Tanaka


Tatsuya Tanaka (@tanaka_tatsuya) is a miniature artist from Japan. He combines common household objects, such as rolls of toilet paper, vegetables, phones and eggs with miniature figurines that he had collected over the years. The series is called “Miniature Life” and is a wonderfully creative perspective of all things miniature and whimsical.

The beauty of Tanaka’s miniature works of art is that he transforms ordinary objects into extraordinary settings and inspires our imagination to run wild.

A toilet roll becomes a ski resort or an ice fishing hole. A disposable face mask becomes a basketball court, a swimming pool or even a sail on a boat.

So, what can we learn from Tanaka’s creative viewpoint, merging small figurines within these obscure scenes?

Taking miniature photos every day has changed the way Tanaka sees the ordinary world around him.

He has commented ‘…the objects I appropriate must be common. They have to be things that people use daily so that they can project themselves into my creations’.


The key to maintaining a creative project like this, according to Tanaka, is consistency and simplicity.

Although his original photos reportedly failed to resonate with an audience, he powered through and found his creative footing. He now has 3.5 million followers on Instagram, eagerly waiting for his daily dose of miniature life.


Creativity can come from anywhere!

It’s a skill you can learn, a process you can improve, a way of thinking and looking at things more profound than the obvious. Tanaka has spoken about this in a past interview… “There is joy in discovering how things can look as if they were something else, just by changing the point of view. Unfortunately, we tend to lose this playful point of view when we become adults. We think only in common sense and our perception of things is fixed. I try to change that.”


Finessing your creative process or broadening your perception of things can be difficult, but by absorbing new and imaginative references like Tatsuya Tanaka’s work you’re already feeding your subconscious the creative nutrients it needs to flourish!


See some more of Tatsuya Tanaka’s work below, and keep your eyes peeled for the next part in our Creative Mindset Series…


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