Thursday, November 8, 2007

Mark A. Nelson—My College Professor and Illustrator

I found this a few weeks ago when I was browsing for new literature to read. You can easily spot a Mark A. Nelson or any of his students work. I think almost all of us carry in our hands and heads a little bit of that man's knowledge which ends up on the page like a red flag to other students of his. This long list of students includes, R.K. Post, Micheal Sutfin, Thomas Baxa, Neil Klemz(Neil, correct my spelling and add any other students you remember), Mike Giba, Mike Heliker, Theresa Brandon, Fred Hooper, Chris Sabatino and the not so illustrious me.

Currently, Mark is teaching at the Animation Department of Madison Area Technical College in Madison, Wisconsin. If I had a million dollars I would drop everything here and move up there and enroll. I sware, for all his tough teaching love, you can learn a lot from him. I took him at NIU where I was lucky enough to have for his last few years of teaching illustration, later he went up North to work for Raven Software. I wonder how he moved his ginormous library. He had a room devoted to skulls and skeletons of various animals. A young illustrators dream, it was like a tiny museum. I know I wanted to be just like him when I grew up.

In these past few months of reconnecting to art, I have been trying to hear Mark's voice in my head. Remembering the things he taught. I have been considering breaking out those old squares and circles that he made us cross-hatch for weeks on end and starting over from there, I even have been contemplating drawing ten things of the same subject matter each week.

Instead I drew a dragons head last night. In get this, a tiny moleskien sketchbook.

If I ever see him again, I will razz him for not having a website.

The book by Tad Williams is sold out and was $200. The small illustration to the right is from the Unearthed Arcana resource book published by Wizards of the Coast, Inc.

Thanks Neil for all the links the reminders!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is probably a big waste of your time but mark nelson has a website called Grazing Dinosaur Press he is my current instructor in media arts and animation in The Art Institutes of Houston(North)