Aru Atsui is a perfect exemplar of how Pija (the artist to thank) uses the space, both within the panel and outside it to illustrate the intensions, dynamics and sexual chemistry of the characters therein. All this plays compliment to an expressive (when it needs to be) art style that gives his work a sense of kineticism beyond what could be achieved through any of the standard, hokey, porn dialogue or just by nature of the situation (two aspects of hentai that I feel often form a crutch for lesser artists).
Really, Pija’s work is at its best when he isn’t relying on dialogue to construct a scene's meaning at all – something he showcases in Aru Atsui – for example:
The first page uses differently sized panels for Miyuki and the guy, drawing the reader’s attention not only to Miyuki’s sexy figure (which we see in almost its entirety - while the guy is only viewed through closeup shots or shaded into obscurity - obviously a stylistic choice to focus the reinforce the reader's focus on Miyuki) and also her sheer, excitement. The impression made is that Miyuki is willingly – no, eagerly – coming on to you which, at least in the context of this type of story, makes Miyuki all the sexier.
Literary storytelling is certainly important - even when applied to primarily visual mediums - but I hope my description of the first page has given a slight glimpse into Pija’s style and what he does so right with composition. Every slight twist in the narrative is presented foremost through a lens of tightly constructed artwork and judicious panellingthat really drives home the emotional content of the scene, or the – sometimes – raw, indulgent and satisfactorily-graphic physicality at play.
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