Shunko was born in Toyama Prefecture and moved to Tokyo in 1924, at the age of fifteen, to study with Tsukahara Reizan. He began his career as a graphic designer for Shirokiya Department Store (later known as Tokyu) in Nihonbashi in 1927, and won various awards in juried shows for designers. He exhibited in the 1926 Teiten when he was only 27, and participated in the Paris Exposition in 1927. In 1929, he entered the atelier of the Nihonga painter Ito Shinsui (1898-1972) and thereafter exhibited with Shinsui's group, Roho Gajuku. In 1932, one of his paintings was chosen for the Nihon Gakai exhibition (a Tokyo group show founded by Kaburagi Kiyokata).
Shunko was admired for the modernity and novelty of his style. He died young (age 33) of an illness.