77 year old retiree proves anything can be done in Microsoft Excel, including beautiful art

Kareem Anderson

Over the past year, PC makers and software giants such as Google, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft have tripped over each other attempting to give customers the very best tools for creative expression. Facebook has fine-tuned Instagram into a behemoth imaging filter for the world, Google has revised its vision for Chromebooks to incorporate pen and touch tools and Microsoft and Apple continue to march forward with their custom creative suites and high sensitivity pen and screen technologies.

But as a creator, sometimes it’s less about the flashy and sometimes expensive new tools and more about creatively working around presumed limitations that help to produce some of the greatest expressions of creativity.

Enter Tatsuo Horiuchi, a 77-year-old retiree who’s taken up creating beautiful landscape artwork simply using Excel and a mouse.

That’s right, Horiuchi somehow figured out that you can create more than just clip and line art using Excel and has gone on to produce some arguably exquisite masterpieces. Seems as though Horiuchi’s patience and frugalness led him down a path to experiment with the tools in Excel to draft, illustrate, shade and color remarkable Japanese landscapes that he now creates and sells large prints of. 

The art produced by Horiuchi rivals what artists who wield a Wacom paired with Adobe’s latest and greatest do, which goes to show two things: a creator is a creator no matter the tools in front them, also, Microsoft’s Excel remains the Swiss Army Knife of the company’s software portfolio.

Let us know in the comments what tools you use to create and why?