Artist Portfolio Magazine – Midwest vs West Art Exhibition
Kim Fujiwara – Rochester Hills, MI
Kim Fujiwara was born and raised on the northwest side of Detroit, Michigan. By first grade he was already in advanced art classes mentored by his art teacher. He was known as “the kid who draws.” He says his influences were Marvel comic books, Monster movies, psychedelic rock posters, Creepy and Mad magazines. He did hallway art and special assignments for grade school and high school. He took second place in the state for the American Legion Poppy Poster contest in the 11th grade. He was determined to make art as a career and in 1975 he enrolled at the prestigious art school Center for Creative Studies/College of Art and Design (CCS) in Detroit. Some influences and inspirations during this time were American artists, Bernie Fuchs, David Grove, Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parrish, Bob Peak, Gil Elvgren, Frank Frazetta, and French Impressionism. After graduating CCS in 1979, Kim worked at major art studios around the Detroit area and by the mid 80’s he was an instructor at CCS for 5 years teaching Illustration, Figure Illustration, and Illustration Techniques. In 1992, Kim started his own studio, Fujiwara Art, Inc.
Kim’s artwork and portraits have appeared on national ads, book covers, editorials, magazine covers, CD covers, posters, brochures, billboards, annual reports, point-of-purchase, and children’s books. Several of his portraits have decorated the walls at the prestigious Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills and more recent works include over 30 portrait montages for Ford Motor Company’s NADA awards which can be viewed at world headquarters in Dearborn. Portraits of celebrities have included, Arnold Palmer, Isiah Thomas, Jack Nicholas, Henry Ford, George Kell, Ben Wright, Al Unser Jr., Hillary Clinton for the Washington Post, and a limited-edition print of Shaquille O’Neal. In 2003 Kim created a series of limited wine labels of Michigan for Cherry Creek Cellars. His work appears in several Native American children’s books including; Carlos Montezuma, Ishi, also Science Adventures/ Whales, and Italian Portraits. He has recently completed another children’s book, “My Name is Leona.” In September 2013 “My Name is Leona’ was awarded Gold Medal from Mom’s Choice Awards.
2009, after the demise of illustrations in print collateral, overall economy, and computer generated images, Kim reinvented his passion from Illustrator to Fine Artist. Kim decided to stay with what he is most known for, figures and portraits. With the support of his wife, he began to create two series of oil paintings, The American West and La Belle Femme
(The Beautiful Woman).
“With both series, The American West and La Belle Femme, I can fuel my creative passion and spirit from everything they have to offer. From colorful landscapes, cowboys and cowgirls, Native Americans, horses, and great wardrobe of the West to beautiful women in a variety of sensual settings and costumes.”
The art of Fujiwara has garnered several Gold and Silver Awards at the Annual Scarab Club Advertising Exhibits held in Detroit, honorable mention at Padzieski gallery in Dearborn, merit on Portfolio.com first on-line art show, a red ribbon at Birmingham’s “Our Town” exhibit, and a gallery spot on ovationtv.com. In 2012 and 2013, Kim was a top 5 finalist in the MI Great Artist Contest to include a solo show in both years.
Kim currently works out of his home studio in Rochester Hills and would like to relocate to Arizona where he can pursue his creative passion and entrepreneurial spirit in the fine art market.
– Oil Painters of America, American Impressionist Society