Akiko Fukuda (Illustrator)
Born and raised in Japan, Akiko Fukuda is a New York based illustrator. After 13 years of holding fashion designer positions in New York, Fukuda finally decided to take up a pen and started afresh with illustration in 2017. In the beginning she considered tackling fashion illustrations, however as she drew, she realized that her main theme is expressing imposingness, purity, and elegance that women eternally possess rather than following trend or fashion.
Fukuda always remembers that her most favorite thing was drawing pretty girl faces and figures daily ever since she was little. Her “playground” was sketch books rather than the outdoors. She was attracted by the world of Makoto Takahashi, the renowned artist for wistful and delicate girl drawings for children’s stationery supplies and magazines. As a teenager, she was hooked on Japanese teen magazines such as “Olive” and “mc Sister” which were full of fashionable and beautiful images. Fukuda believes that the root of her fashion career was based on Takahashi’s illustrations and beautiful images in magazines that captured her imagination in her childhood rather than any garment designers of mention.
Fukuda has been aware of the possibility of artworks using digital tools to explore more flexibility in expression. She adhered to an entirely hand drawn process in the beginning, however she began experimenting with new processes in September 2017; bringing hand sketches by pigment liners to digital files and adding dimensional effects and depth by using digital paint brush and layers. Although Fukuda’s main theme is expressing imposing beauty in female expressions, she makes portions of the figures transparent, and enjoys the unity between female figures and backgrounds such as botanical motifs. Through her illustration, she is seeking opportunities to share expressions of beauty, purity, and allure of female images that may remind many women what they used to be through their childhood experiences.