Junji Ito is one of Japan's top horror manga artists. Inspired by the work of Kazuo Umezu, he took on drawing horror stories himself. He initially combined his work as a mangaka with his dayjob as a dental technician. He first came to attention when one of his short stories won an honourable mention in the 1987 Umezu awards. Ito's often very cruel but original work, mostly deals with beautiful girls, like in his 'Tomie' series.
In 1998, during the horror boom that followed the success of Ringu, 'Tomie' was adapted into a movie. Since then, many of his works have been adapted for TV and the cinema. Another famous manga by Ito is the three-volume 'Uzumaki', about sinister spirals that posses a small town. He subsequently made 'Hellstar Lemina', published in Big Comic Spirits' monthly Casual, as well as short stories in Nemuki.