Beginning with this art issue we decided that it was finally time to include special artist profiles. We've done a couple here and there over the past few years but have never been able to fully dedicate the space or resources to keep them coming.

Well, for 2010 not only do we have a whole new look and feel, but to go along with that we will be featuring artists from around the world much more frequently.

Kicking off our artist profiles with a bang, we teamed up with Fudemae from Japan who is responsible for the flawless paintjob and design of this month's cover truck. Fudemae is one of Japan's premier artists and hails from Toyota City, Japan. As such, he speaks very little English so needless to say this profile and interview was fun to translate!

As a young child, Fudemae grew up around art and was heavily enriched in culture. At the age of three, Daisuke Maeda (now known as Fudemae) took notice of his father's work as he turned language into art. The Japanese written language is just as beautiful as their culture, and Daisuke took in all that was around him. In early junior high and high school, Daisuke became interested in American "kustom kulture" and began to work on and paint motorcycles. As he perfected his talent, Daisuke began to totally immerse himself into art and all of its elements. He came up with the name "Fudemae" as his call tag which translates from Japanese with many different meanings. "Fude" means brush, and "mae" translates to many things depending on how it's followed. "Ude" means arm, and "ude mae" means good skill, technique, or done well. So "Fudemae" is a good mixed word, which loosely translates to "good technique with brush"

After a few years developing his talent as a painter, customizer, and pinstriper, Fudemae went full time with his artwork in 2001. We first caught wind of his work in 2004 after seeing some of the cool club paintings from the Japan truck club Outer Limits. We fell in love with his work in 2008 when we laid eyes on the stunning flame work that graces the cover of this month's cover truck and we knew we had to know more. Enjoy the Q & A to learn more about one of Japan's finest custom artists, and for more information check out the Lowdown or visit Fudemae.com.

Lowdown
Name: Daisuke Maeda AKA Fudemae
First Started: At the age of three
Fulltime Artist Since: 2001
Mediums: Painting, sculpting, pinstriping, computer art
Style: Kustom car culture, American art, many different genres
Website: Fudemae.com

Q & A

MT: When and how did you first become interested in art?

Fudemae: When I was three years old I saw my father scribble up something that he turned into art and I instantly became hooked. I was into American music and customs like motorcycles all throughout high school. I started to customize my motorcycle and started to do custom paint. Soon after, I began to work for K's Bodyworks that builds customs for the Outer Limits truck club and learned a lot.

MT: When did you make the transition to a fulltime artist?

Fudemae: I started my career while working at K's. I started to paint many cars and motorcycles, but in 2001 I decided to go fulltime with custom paint, designs, and art for worldwide companies, sculpting, pinstriping, and more. I enjoy many different styles and mediums of art so I enjoy making it my fulltime career.

MT: What are some of your biggest accomplishments as an artist?

Fudemae: I love working with worldwide companies, like designing art and shirts for Tribal Gear clothing. I enjoy doing custom car paint for Outer Limits Japan Truck Club and have had those paint designs featured in Truck Trends and Mini Truckin'. I'm really excited to have my work featured here in MT and especially honored to be on the cover.

MT: Who do you look up to in the art world or who's influenced your work?

Fudemae: I'm a big fan of So Cal-style art so artists that I look up to include OG Abel and Craig Fraser among others. I also like Alphonse Mucha, Rat Gjo (Japanese Silver Designer), and too many others too list.

MT: What is your personal favorite art medium to work in?

Fudemae: I really enjoy painting and sculpting as I can represent my artwork in different ways using the same motif.

MT: What style would you say your art can be categorized mostly as?

Fudemae: I really love to work with many different mediums and genres but most of my style is probably considered kustom car culture, American, or So Cal art.

MT: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Fudemae: It's an honor to be featured in Mini Truckin' magazine. I really hope everyone enjoys my artwork. If you want to check out more of my work, visit Fudemae.com. Thanks for your support.

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