By now, it's fair to assume you know about V-Union cards: Pokémon so powerful that they can't be contained to a single card. And of course we can't have a new card type without the mascot of the franchise getting one! Pikachu's V-Union is a bit unique though: it's not one Pokémon... it's 25.
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Yup! To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Pokémon, there are 25 Pikachu in Pikachu V-Union. The coolest part though is that each Pikachu has been illustrated by a different artist! So who are they, and which Pikachu did they contribute? Check them out!
Yuu Nishida was the winner of the 2018 Illustration Grand Prix, a contest that gives unknown artists a shot at having their work turned into a Pokémon card. For his piece, Yū created this stunning Gardevoir piece!
Mitsuhiro Arita is a freelance illustrator who has created artwork for the Pokémon Trading Card Game since its earliest days. In addition to Pokémon, he has also provided artwork for several other trading and collectible card games based on franchises such as Shin Megami Tensei, Super Sentai, and Monster Hunter.
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Some of his contributions to the Pokémon TCG include product-hover id="200352" from Cosmic Eclipse, product-hover id="84611" from Team Rocket Returns, and product-hover id="195000" from Unified Minds.
Kawaguchi Yoohei is a freelance digital illustrator, and has been providing card art since the Rising Rivals expansion. He is credited under the name "Kawayoo."
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Youhei's style is very distinctive, and often features dense details and extremes of perspective.
Kouichi Ooyama is best known for being one of the original game designers of the Pokémon Trading Card Game, and has recently worked on Pokémon Duel. He's actually in the Pokémon Trading Card Game video game as a Pokémon Card researcher, Dr. Ooyama (Dr. Mason in the English version). His art is credited under the name "OOYAMA."
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Some of Ooyama's contributions to the card game include product-hover id="126931" from SM Base Set, product-hover id="130930" from Guardians Rising, and product-hover id="117772" from Fates Collide.
kirisAki has been illustrating for the Pokémon Trading Card Game since Legendary Treasures, and they're responsible for many of your favorite Supporter cards.
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Some of their more notable works include the alt-art version of product-hover id="246756" from Evolving Skies, product-hover id="165686" from Forbidden Light, and product-hover id="208496" from Sword and Shield Base Set.
Like kirisAki, not much is known about the artist who goes by sowsow, beyond the fact that they have contributed to the Pokémon Trading Card Game since 2018.
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Some of their best-known work includes alt-art product-hover id="246689" from Evolving Skies, Promo product-hover id="232461", and product-hover id="195145" from Unified Minds.
Ryota Murayama has been an illustrator for the Pokémon Trading Card Game since 2014.
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He's worked on a few gorgeous cards like the promo version of product-hover id="196347", product-hover id="219495" from Darkness Ablaze, and product-hover id="95952" from Primal Clash.
Kouki Saitou has illustrated Pokémon cards since the early 2000s, and is credited on hundreds of cards that showcase his evolving (heh) style.
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Some of his most iconic cards are product-hover id="84186" from Skyridge, product-hover id="232466" from Shining Fates: Shiny Vault, and product-hover id="85501" from Delta Species.
Like kirisAki, Naoki Saito seems to specialize in full-art supporter cards. Unlike kirisAki, he is a public figure, with a popular YouTube channel where he teaches viewers about illustration. He has been illustrating cards for the Pokémon TCG since the late 2000s.
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Some of his best-known pieces include full-art product-hover id="157767" from Ultra Prism, product-hover id="100620" from Ancient Origins, and that product-hover id="208353" everybody's playing.
Taira Akitsu only started illustrating for the Pokémon TCG recently, in the Sword and Shield Base Set, and not much is known about them. Even so, some of their work has garnered a lot of attention.
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Their cards include the Sword & Shield promo of product-hover id="218583", alt-art product-hover id="246704" from Evolving Skies, and product-hover id="223003" from Champion's Path.
Hitoshi Ariga doesn't just illustrate Pokémon—he designed several of them himself, including the Inkay and Honedge evolution lines. He's done illustrations for the Pokémon TCG since 2011, and he's also been heavily involved in the Megaman franchise since the mid 1990s.
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You may recognize him from his work on all three versions of product-hover id="189299", product-hover id="117838" from Fates Collide, and the Sun & Moon promo of product-hover id="148428".
AKIRA EGAWA is a freelance illustrator and character designer who has worked on the Pokémon Trading Card Game since Unified Minds.
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They've contributed art to cards such as product-hover id="241671" from Chilling Reign, product-hover id="246720" from Evolving Skies, and product-hover id="234256" from Battle Styles.
Naoyo Kimura has lent his picture-book style to at least one card in almost every Pokémon TCG expansion since Primal Clash.
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Among the cards he has illustrated are product-hover id="90142" from Neo Discovery, product-hover id="85321" from Majestic Dawn, and product-hover id="83471" from Dark Explorers.
Tomokazu Komiya's illustration style is well known within the Pokémon community due to his slightly deformed and loosely colored images, which you can see in the cards he's drawn:
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Sanosuke Sakuma is a freelance illustrator who began creating art for the Pokémon Trading Card Game in 2013. She specializes in producing artwork with cute characters that invokes a warm atmosphere.
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Her style utilizes a soft, rounded drawing style, which is visible in cards like product-hover id="92203" from Furious Fists, product-hover id="219474" from Darkness Ablaze, and product-hover id="226573" from Vivid Voltage.
Jiro Sasumo has only illustrated one other Pokémon card besides Pikachu V-Union. In 2019, the won the second Grand Prix illustration contest and got their piece turned into a promo card which (so far) has only been printed in Japan.
Narumi Sato is another newcomer, and has been working on the Pokémon Trading Card Game as an artist since Shining Fates.
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Some of their work has included product-hover id="234246" from Battle Styles, a Sword and Shield promo of product-hover id="224361", and product-hover id="232424" from Shining Fates.
An illustrator for the Pokémon Trading Card Game, Shibuzoh has been illustrating since Generations starting with Clefairy.
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Some of their notable work includes product-hover id="92247" from Furious Fists, the alt-art version of product-hover id="201286", and a promo version of product-hover id="222072" from the Sword & Shield Base Set.
sui is a freelance digital illustrator who has provided illustrations for the Pokémon Trading Card Game since the Arceus expansion.
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They've contributed some incredibly flavorful art over the years, including product-hover id="195118" from Unified Minds, a promo version of product-hover id="197856", and product-hover id="241872" from Chilling Reign.
There's not much information about Miki Tanaka beyond that they are an illustrator for the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Apparently though, they're Egoraptor's favorite Pokémon artist for their super-flat, simple style.
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Saya Tsuruta is a former Game Freak employee who contributed graphics and design to several Pokémon games including HeartGold and SoulSilver and Black and White. Among others, she's credited with designing the Fletchling and Goomy evolution lines.
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She still provides freelance illustration for the Pokémon card game—you may have seen her product-hover id="206051", product-hover id="184483", and product-hover id="114006" cards.
Atsuko Nishida is a character designer for (of all characters) Pikachu! She once said that the first design of Pikachu looked like a tall daifuku rice confection with ears. That's not all—she also designed Eevee and each of its evolutions, and has illustrated hundreds of Pokémon cards all the way to the most recent sets.
Some of the many, many cards she's worked on include a McDonald's promo of product-hover id="157721", product-hover id="86738" from Neo Destiny, and product-hover id="226587" from Vivid Voltage.
A writer and illustrator, Kagemaru Himeno has provided material for Pokémon since the franchise's earliest years.
With over 600 card illustrations credited to her, she's probably best known for cards like product-hover id="106981" from Jungle, product-hover id="84607" from Team Rocket, and (more recently) product-hover id="234073" from Battle Styles.
Masakazu Fukuda has illustrated hundreds of Pokémon cards, and many cards for other games like Shin Megami Tensei and OG Crusade. But he may be best known as the artist behind every single Pokémon Star card:
The last artist to contribute is actually a group of artists, 5ban Graphics. They have illustrated over 1,000 cards for the Pokémon Trading Card Game, starting in the Black & White series.
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Each Pikachu is incredibly unique, and seeing all these artist contribute to a single card has been an amazing experience. Do you know which artist created your favorite card? Let us know on Facebook and Instagram!