Number of Episodes: 13
Production Studio: Hal Film Maker
Fansub Release Viewed: SpoonSubs
Likelihood of US Release: Medium-Low
This show is a slice of life show about a group of students, mostly female, who belong to an art club. It's based on a 4-panel comic. The main character is a shy girl named Sora who is both very observant and a friend to the stray cats in town.
In the intro, a brown-haired girl is running around taking pictures of things around the town, while Sora sits in a vacant lot trying to sketch a picture of a cat sleeping there. The outgoing girl realizes that she's bothering her, so runs off, while Sora can barely make herself speak a full word. She wanders off as she narrates the opening. She talks about how shy she is and how interacting with people is difficult for her. But she loves to draw and always has her sketchbook with her. When people ask her why she doesn't just use a camera, she just knows that sketching is more her style.
In art club at school, the teacher is stressing out about an upcoming exhibition, but the students aren't feeling creative, being allowed to draw what they feel like rather than being given an actual assignment. Everyone has a reason to not be productive, including frustration with their media, lack of inspiration, or just weird thoughts (one girl paints a 100 yen coin because of what's on her mind). Then Sora arrives, having recently joined the club. She has trouble entering the room, due to one of the male members who's especially loud and boisterous. They lure here in by making the guy look like a cat. Sora's sad because of having little success at drawing the cat earlier, but she sees another outside and rushes back out of the room. Some others follow her out. Sadly, when they get there, the kitty is already gone.
Three girls, including Sora, take a little trip into the city to draw. When she sees something cute to draw (a bird about to be blown off of a power line) Sora whips out her sketchbook - only to have the bird fly away once she's ready -- this may be a pattern of poor luck with timing. She becomes entranced by an udon shop called "Kyoumi" (a pun on the Japanese word for "interest"). They go inside for some food. Sora arranges the different ingredients in her spoon to get a little of everything in her bite while her friends fail at eating properly. So they end up with food that's too spicy and chapped lips because of it. On their way back, they find some upperclassmen working on their sketches, looking for inspiration. One is looking for bugs, and seems to know the story behind them. They find a beetle and follow it, because its name means something like "shows the way". They follow it onto an outcrop where they can view the city below. They've all found their perfect drawing place, and they sketch beneath the setting sun.
The next day, Sora's back at the vacant lot again, trying to draw the local stray cat doing cute stuff. He gets muddy paws and walks across her sketchbook. Sometimes the best things are the most unexpected.
This show is very slow, and while it contains a good chunk of humor, for the most part there isn't a whole lot of dialog, especially from the main character. It's definitely well-within the category of slice-of-life, as there doesn't seem to be an over-arching plot; rather, it's a series of shorter episodes and observations. It's very reminiscent of Azumanga Daioh in that way, only not as comedy-oriented or high strung.
The character designs are simple, cute, and colorful while still existing in the realm of the realistic (no candy-colored hair, for example). The school uniforms are fairly modest as well, which is nice to see. This would be a show of interest to people who like the slice-of-life genre, but it might be pretty boring for most people.
This show is probably a bit too slow to be enjoyed by anyone other than fans of this niche genre, so an American release is unlikely.