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Mark Gervais

Mark Gervais started his illustration career right out of college, but the first thing he made was a drawing desk he used through school. “I can’t take full credit since my dad held my hand through most of the process, but it was the first practical thing I designed and built, and it’s my main work desk to this day.”

Not too long after he finished college, he took a job “doing web design and Flash animation, and the illustration kind of got shoved aside for a while. While I was playing around in Flash, I learned a lot of animation tricks and discovered that I really loved it. Once I decided to make a go of it on my own again, I had this whole other world of motion to explore. Now the bulk of my work is a combination of illustration and animation.”


If Halloween is your favorite time of year, there’s a good chance you know about (or own) Hallowindow. A few years ago, Mark wanted to do something different and fun for his family’s Halloween decorations. “I had the idea of building a mechanical shadow puppet, but quickly abandoned it in favor of projecting some animations on our window instead. I didn’t think much of it, but after posting a video of my projection to YouTube, I got an overwhelming response and decided to produce and sell more of my animations so other people could use them. It came from pretty simple beginnings, and has grown into a really fun project.”

“I just want to keep drawing and animating

and learning new ways to make things move.”

Drawn together

Mark credits Douglas Fraser and Mike Mignola with influencing his approach to illustration. “They tend to take a more precise graphic design approach and I definitely find myself scrutinizing the angles and details when I draw. But he also draws from skateboard culture, graffiti, anime, and poster design. “It’s hard to pin down one thing. We’re so connected online these days that there’s a constant stream of amazingly creative stuff. You don’t even have to try to be inspired on a daily basis.”

What compels him to create? “I can be extremely picky, which makes finding what I want really hard. So I usually just make it myself. It’s also nice to look at something and know it began as a nebulous idea, but through a lot of work it becomes an object you can hold in your hand.”

A longtime interest in screen printing could see Mark moving more in that direction, but, he says, “I just want to keep drawing and animating and learning new ways to make things move.”

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