mt masking tape

Art Director / Graphic Designer Koji Iyama

10 years has passed since the birth of mt. Before Kamoi's masking tape, which was once used for industrial purposes, becomes "mt" for stationery and chandlery that colors your lives, current unique visions of the world of mt are created by many individuals, in addition to users. At this time, we would like to share with you the thoughts of these creators, who are important to mt, through their interviews. The first creator who agreed to an interview was Mr. Koji Iyama, an art director dedicated to the creation of the current style of mt in collaboration with us.

Personal profile of Koji Iyama
Born in Shizuoka Prefecture in 1967. Graduated from the graphic design course at Tama Art University in 1992. Established Iyama Design after working at Nippon Design Center, Inc. and atom. Awarded British D&AD Black Pencil, Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity Gold Lion, SPIKES ASIA Grand Prix, ONE SHOW Design Gold Award, CLIO Gold Awards, New York ADC Gold Awards, DESIGN TOKYO Award Grand Prix and many more. Currently in charge of design of mt brands.

1. To design mt.

Gathering, scattering, roughing or concentrating. Anything can be used to make motifs. A limitless number of many more new things.
When I was thinking for the first time about motifs other than mt's patterns, I paid special attention to the state, "What is an appropriate motif for its original shape?" mt is a round object, but long and thin tape continues to come as I pull it out. What are long and thin motifs among those things we have in our daily lives.
For example, things like chains or string. Or, a square block is made by tearing mt. Something that is easy to use in this case. Labels can also be a motif. I started my designs by finding already existing motifs in the world and fit the shape.
After that, I could achieve a good design balance by spreading or scattering things without being restricted by shape. At a certain point I began to realize that by combining complex things together, most things can be accommodated within thin and long surfaces and they can stay there in a good way. Thus, anything can be an mt motif.
I have created many patterns for mt tape. I feel I can still create many more new designs.

Art Director / Graphic Designer 居山 浩二 Koji Iyama

2. Decorating a space using mt

I don't really start my design from scratch, but I do that I am urged by the mood. I think that this sense is important.
When I think about the design of an exhibition hall, I start checking the structure of the exhibition hall. If the exhibition hall is like a warehouse, the place can have unique features, such as high ceilings or being dark, etc. If it is a commercial facility existing within a commercial area, what can be done in such a place. There are no two buildings exactly the same in the world. So, I try to make the most of the original qualities of places as much as possible.
I think about and then decide the type of event I can hold in each place only after extensively considering the building's history and the mood of the entire area in which the building is located. I don't really start my designs from scratch, but I do feel that I am urged by the mood.
By holding exhibitions in different locations each time, I feel like I am urged by the mood of the place which allows me to create different things. I feel encouraged to do so and that this is important.

Art Director / Graphic Designer 居山 浩二 Koji Iyama

3. The presence of mt and its potential

I would like to maintain a relationship in which we can share the pleasure of creating while influencing one another.
mt was originally created based on the suggestions of people who like masking tape. It is a product which has always been developed in consideration of people' needs and how it can be used.
I see different ways of using it and such use can directly be reflected in design and product development. I would like to maintain a relationship in which we can share the pleasure of creation while influencing one another. It is wonderful to do that, don't you think so?

Art Director / Graphic Designer 居山 浩二 Koji Iyama