Born in Asomachi in Ibaraki Prefecture with the birth name of Maejima Tadaaki. He was raised by his mother. At the end of WWII he was trained as a kamikaze pilot, but was saved by the war’s end. After the war he graduated from Ibaraki Teachers’ College and became vice-principal of an elementary school there. In 1954 he married Takako Umeno who assisted her husband throughout his printmaking career. In the late 1950s, he selected the art name (gō) Haku Maki (literally, “white roll,” with connotations similar to “airhead”) to promote himself as an eccentric artist who lacked academic training. Most of Maki Haku’s prints are immediately recognizable by their subject matter – often stylized kanji characters, ceramic vessels or fruit – and their deeply embossed images and velvety colors. During his almost fifty year career, Maki created approximately 2000 different print designs, with an average edition of 100 prints. His work is extremely popular with collectors world-wide and is held by major museums around the world.