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Have you ever imagined that you could draw with… Microsoft Excel?!

For over 15 years, Japanese artist Tatsuo Horiuchi has created paintings of detailed mountains, blooming flowers and thick woods with the most peculiar tool – Microsoft Excel. The 77-year-old illustrator and artist has rejected the idea of paying for terribly expensive drawing materials or investing time to learn to work with a more professional drawing program on his computer, saying that he even prefers Microsoft Excel to another more elementary Microsoft tool – the small but cute Paint tool.

The reason Tatsuo Horiuchi prefers to work with Microsoft Excel is that he thinks the program has “more features and is easier to use”

Using a few simple vector drawing tools, designed mainly for graphics and simple forms, the Japanese artist creates beautiful sceneries from the rural parts of Japan.

The idea of trying something new in his life came naturally for Tatsuo Horiuchi –  he was close to retirement and finding a new interesting and exciting hobby became a must. The Japanese artist has been interested in graphic arts for many years, and it was only a matter of choosing which one would be the most accessible, handy and practical software to work with.

It is remarkable that Horiuchi has never used the Excel program for work, and although he had some difficulties at the beginning, he soon learned the drawing technique using Excel and even won the Excel Autoshape Art Contest in 2006. His deep, delicate and harmonious colorful images reflect the traditional Japanese paintings, often displaying wonderful landscapes and pieces of Japan’s natural and cultural heritage.

The non-traditional artist even tries to paint with Microsoft Word, but realizes that the program is too restrictive because of the fixed page size, while Excel gives much more freedom to the artist. After discovering the artistic features of the program and his ability to use them, Horiuchi participates in many contests and competitions in Japan and around the world.

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