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Growing up in Japanese culture focused on maintaining harmony, Noriko Fukui of Toronto, Canada, felt like she had no means to express herself—until she found art.

Now, Noriko’s creations celebrate feelings of freedom and mischief and center around her wonderful sense of individuality. Using ink, oil, acrylic and encaustic, as well as digital art, Noriko expresses her love of life, which she feels should include a good dose of laughter every day.

She particularly is drawn to female figures and features, as you’ll see here today. Let’s take a look at three of her paintings, starting with A Red Veil, below.

lifting-the-veil---a-red-veil

In particular, I love how the extremely delicate structure of lace contrasts beautifully with the woman’s bold lip and eye makeup. Her refined, languid features are magnified by the twist of her head to her shoulder, which portrays her in a deeply feminine manner, especially as her shoulders remain bare, all but slightly draped in the veil.

They say eyes are windows to the soul, and in this case, I believe it—so expansive and expressive are her ice-blue eyes! Lastly, her strawberry-blonde hair adds a little color and fire to the painting, elevating it from demure to dynamic and exciting.

In her next painting, Red Pekko Lips, Noriko used acrylic and ink on cardboard, which provides the perfect backdrop for this high-intensity composition:

be-a-clown---a-red-pekko-lips

Even more amazing is the three-dimensional effect Noriko was able to apply to the clown’s face through some clever shading and highlighting (and the printed newspaper!) Plus, you can’t beat those rock-star polka-dotted lips for a tremendously colorful burst of energy.

Finally, Blue Glasses reminds me completely of 70′s pop culture, with the retro, round glasses, the full, bouncing hair and the bright, geometric patterns that always seem in motion. With her nonchalant stance and pursed red lips, this is a woman who simply exudes confidence and coolness, no matter what decade it is!

Seeing-as-I-am---blue-glasses

For more of Noriko’s amazing paintings, head on over to her website today. . . you’ll find her full collection of diverse, unique portraits—and every one is worth a look!

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Collage artist Janyce Boynton uses hand-stamped papers and acrylic paint to create nature-inspired collages filled with her home state's flora and fauna. Janyce lists among her influences a lifetime of crafts and artmaking, including Ukrainian egg decorating, painting, art quilting, screen-printing and photography.

In fact, I'd say her. . . read more

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