Katsushika Hokusai (葛飾北斎 1760-1849), known as simply Hokusai (北斎) is a famous Japanese painter and Ukiyo-e maker.
Hokusai was born was born in Edo in the 9th month of the 10th year of the period Horeki (October-November, 1760) to an artisan family. His father, Nakajima Issai, was a mirror-maker. At age eighteen, after some practice as a wood-engraver, he entered the studio of Katsugawa Shunsho[?], a painter and designer of color prints. His disregard for the artistic principles of his master caused his expulsion in 1785.
Although from time to time Hokusai studied various styles, he maintained stylistic independence thereafter. For a time he lived in extreme poverty, and, although he must have gained sums for his work which might have secured him comfort, he remained poor, and to the end of his life proudly described himself as a peasant.
Some of Ukiyo-e from that series:
First in the series, known as "Wave".
Second in the series, known as "Red Fuji"
"Dragon over mount Fuji"
45th of the series - "Travelers going through river Oi"