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SILENT MANGA AUDITION® EXTRA ROUND with "Fukushima Sakura Mori Project"

Taiyo Nakashima Taiyo Nakashima 18/12/2015 8 min read
SILENT MANGA AUDITON® × Fukushima Sakura Mori project   


SMAEX1_main   An extra round of SILENT MANGA AUDITION® is announced for early 2016. Extra round means an Extra chance for contestants to win awards and prizes.  The deadline was 1st March 2016.  – Entry is now closed


The same rules and guides apply as the latest, regular round. (SMA05, as of December 2016)  

Please see the event guideline for detailed information:

  SILENT MANGA AUDITION®, one of the largest practical manga (Japanese style comics) competitions in the world, announces an “Extra-Round” for 2016, in co-operation with “Fukushima SakuraMori Project”, a non-profit organization with the goal of supporting children in Fukushima in the wake of the 2011 East Japan Earthquake. Award selection, prizes, and masterclass points will be handled in the same manner as a regular round. Together with rounds 5 & 6, (SMA05 & SMA06), there are 3 chances to win awards in 2016. The themes are, “Sakura” (Japanese Cherry Blossom), plus one of the following: “Keep on Smiling” / “Returning a Favor” The deadline is 1st March 2016.  In addition to regular awards and prizes including the ¥500,000 JPY “grand prix”, High achievers of this round will be invited to Japan, to attend a ceremony where their works will be displayed, alongside other partners supporting the good cause.  Aspiring artists are encouraged to enter both SMA05 and the extra round, to fully utilise the opportunities provided by this event. More details, as well as tutorials and tips on drawing for this extra round will be announced on the official website.  

Words from the Chairman

Since olden times, “Sakura” (Cherry Blossoms) have been a symbol of Japanese culture. Those who watch over the growth of the Sakura trees, ensuring they blossom, are traditionally called “SakuraMori” (Sakura Guardians). The FUKUSHIMA SAKURA MORI Project was created to spread Fukushima’s distinctive Sakura to all corners of the globe, displaying Fukushima’s rich natural beauty to future generations, in the hopes of forging stronger bonds with other towns and cities. (

Almost 5 years have passed since the Great East Japan Earthquake (March 2011). During this time Fukushima has been on its way to recovery, including its traditionally vibrant sightseeing industry. Aided by various actions in support of the region, such as the popular TV drama “Yae no Sakura”, broadcast on NHK (Japan’s national broadcaster). However, due to the accident at the nuclear power plant, there may still be a bias, based on misunderstandings, towards Fukushima.

To heal this rift, and to give people a sense of kinship with Fukushima, the SAKURA MORI project was created, to spread Fukushima’s Sakura throughout the globe. This project is backed by the Japanese Government’s Reconstruction Agency and Fukushima Prefecture. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, City of Kyoto, and various businesses and educational institutions have also declared their support, creating a circle of cooperation and understanding.

SILENT MANGA AUDITION®, is declaring our support for FUKUSHIMA SAKURA MORI Project – a project that aims to bring smiles to everyone in Japan, and in the world. Today we are announcing SMA “EXTRA-Round”, welcoming SILENT MANGA, which convey messages of happiness across language and cultural barriers.

The themes for this Extra-round of SILENT MANGA AUDITION, are “Keep on Smiling” and “Returning the favour”.

Those were chosen from the messages of the children of Fukushima, to their future selves. A book containing all of their messages are sent together with the Sakura tree to towns in support of the project.

Choose one of the two themes, and preferably combine that with an episode of “Sakura (Cherry Blossoms)” to create your SILENT MANGA. In addition to our usual prizes, top award winners will also be invited to Japan to attend a special awards ceremony. We look forward to receiving your manga.

– Shuichi “Mocchi” Mochida

      Photo of Sakura tree, by Naoki Ishii. Reproduced under Creative Commons 2.0 Attribution license.
Taiyo Nakashima

Taiyo Nakashima