Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Art of Punk: Mark Bell

When Mark Bell isn’t playing guitar in the band Müg he works as a freelance illustrator, creating T-shirt designs, posters and album covers for bands and record labels. He’s another example of a multi-talented creative as his designs are awesome (and his guitar playing isn’t bad either).


Mark’s illustrations usually focus on a particular character – be it a person, animal or other-worldly creature – which is something that really make his artwork stand out. I really love his animal designs because although I love skulls, zombies and other horror imagery that inundate the punk rock world, it’s refreshing to see some awesome animal illustrations instead. Plus I love animals – the fox image in particular is a favourite of mine.


As well as creating designs for specific artists, Mark also produces a number of designs that any band can then buy to use for themselves. It’s something I’ve not really seen offered before, by other designers and illustrators in punk rock, but is a pretty neat idea – especially for bands that are just starting out and might not have much of a visual image yet. Check out his Facebook page for more info on that.

When he does work directly with bands, he sketches out his idea or ideas – whether they be ideas the band had or his own – with good old pencil and paper and then sends them off to the band for approval. Once approved, Mark scans the pencil sketch into Photoshop and colours up the design digitally. How do I know this? Because I read this insight into Mark’s design process, for the River Jumpers poster above (it’s over a year old but I imagine his design process hasn’t changed!).

On a non-music related note, his Jurassic Park illustration is awesome! (And you can buy a print of it, if you want, too.)