Alexis Marcou's studio in 2015
24 March 1984
|Drawing, illustration, digital art, new media art|
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His best known works have been for Nike, Cisco, BMW and Acco Brands. His digital design methods and practices have led to Marcou having multiple interviews with Adobe and he has appeared in a number of their magazines.
Early life and education
Marcou was born in Greece and was raised in Larissa. He went on to be educated in Britain, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Arts in Photomedia and Design Communication in 2006 at the Plymouth College of Art. In 2007 he started doing freelance work and since has been steadily working as a commercial visual artist. After his studies in 2006 he began to merge his drawing with the use of digital software. A notable example of this style is the Panda series of images that he created in 2008 and which were sold as limited edition prints. In 2009, Marcou designed the album cover for the Mau band's album, backseat love songs.
After completing a small initiated project called Cocaine, Marcou was approached by Nike in 2010. This resulted in Marcou designing an illustration for the company. The project focused on the recreation of the Just Do It slogan, and the Swoosh logo in his own signature style. During the same period, Marcou worked on a total of 3 separate projects for Designers Against Child Slavery. The non-profit went on to host a number of art exhibitions in the United States, where Marcou's work was displayed. This included two major exhibitions in New York City and Columbia, South Carolina. His non-profit work continued into 2011, when he did work for Pencils of Promise.
Marcou worked on a self-commissioned piece called Noire during 2011. The piece was included in the International Contemporary Masters Seven. During an interview Marcou stated, "Noire is an illustration mainly created by hand. Photography was also used for its completion. Numerous photos of crystals were taken and then digitally composed onto the original piece to create the cold crystal mode".
After working for both Pencils of Promise and Designers Against Child Slavery, he was commissioned by Hewlett Packard to design a number of illustrations. The illustrations were used as the companies official desktop backgrounds in 2012. Later that year he was again commissioned by Nike to create the Nike Lion for Galatasaray football club. The design was showcased as part of the Nike Graphic Studio Show in 2013. In late 2011, Marcou had his first major venture into clothing design. He worked alongside the Indian textile company, Crusoe.
Marcou was commissioned through Slang Inc, to design for Foot Locker on behalf of Nike. The commissioned work was for wall graphics to be used in Foot Locker stores and was known as the House of Hoops. Following the implementation of the design, Kevin Durant signed Marcou's wall graphic in the Foot Locker store in Harlem, New York City, as part of the fifth anniversary of the House of Hoops.
Marcou's first major portrait work came in June 2012, when he was commissioned to produce four portraits of members of the Animal Collective band and a portrait of Christian Louboutin for the Nylon Guys September issue. During the summer of 2012, he created a futuristic trade fair stand for BMW. His designs for Endeavor Snowboards went on to feature in The Telegraph and were listed as the one of the best intermediate or advanced snowboards to buy. He also worked with Atomic Skis during the same period, creating their Atomic Automatic which went on to be released a year later.
Later that year he also featured in Complex, following the creation of the font he called Defender for Nike and Major League Baseball. He also went on to create a portrait of Philip Glass for the November issue of Nylon Guys towards the end of 2012.
The Phase album cover for The Wait was designed by Marcou in 2013, and also the artwork for the band's single, Point of You. He was commissioned by Freefly Systems to design their NAB Show trade stand for the Las Vegas show. Mccann Erickson commissioned Marcou to design seven separate illustrations for Boehringer Ingelheim. His work for the Derwent Cumberland Pencil Company went on to be used as part of their product packaging for limited edition pencil cases.
In September 2013, after working with Atomic Skis for little over a year on the Atomic Automatic product, it featured on the cover of Powder Magazine. From this point onwards Marcou worked closely with the company, and went on to design graphics for their Vantage series. Marcou's work was featured during the Adobe Max keynotes in late 2013.
Marcou's work featured in the Adobe Max 2014 keynote, with a focus on the work he carried out for Derwent Pencils. One of the common techniques he uses on Photoshop appeared in the magazine Advanced Photoshop.
Early in 2015 one of Marcou's techniques was featured in issue 131 of the magazine Advanced Photoshop. In February 2015 Digital Abstracts announced that Marcou will be amongst 53 other artists participating in Playing Arts 2, a design project for a deck of playing cards. In spring 2015 Jordan Brand released new clothing with Marcou's design on. The design has the letters 'Lucky No 7's' written on the clothing and the style was influenced by Tinker Hatfield tribal design of the original AJ VII Hare basketball shoe.
Marcou's style often uses intricate shading and geometric lines for his illustrations. The effects are usually created using graphite. The techniques he uses, combine a mixture of traditional methods and digital art, but have regularly been referred to as an unusual style.
Computer Arts magazine stated "there's a visceral quality to Alexis Marcou's sketch-style illustration work that really speaks of his ability to capture a living moment with his pencil", when discussing Marcou's style and works. Marcou says his style has "evolved gradually into a more cubic and expressive style". Another unique style he is known to use is to use makeup brushes to blend graphite and charcoal.
- Rooms Magazine (2014) Issue 14 ‘The Color of Sound’, Published in London by Rau Studio London Handpicked, pg 104, ISSN 2046-5505
- Pork & Mead (Nov/Dec 2011) Issue 2, pg33
- Bangstyle Art Book (2012) ‘Bang style - Hair and Culture Art + Soul book’, pg 48
- Big Up Magazine Issue 12 ‘Black & White’, pg 14
- American Cinematographer (April 2013) Vol. 4 No. 94 ‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ Freefly Systems, pg 75 ISSN 0002-7928
- American Cinematographer (June 2013) Vol. 6 No. 94 ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’. Freefly Systems pg 9
- Advanced Photoshop. Issue 101, ‘Trend Focus’ pg 78
- Advanced Photoshop. Issue 105, ‘Techniques’ pg 74
- Advanced Photoshop. Issue 131, ‘Techniques: Finishing with HDR Toning’, pg 29
- Get Inspired! Magazine #22 (2014) ‘112 pages of creative inspiration’, pgs 16-25
- Book Of Creation (August 2011) ‘1000 Creations’ pgs 8-9
- Avant Garde (June 2011) Issue 15, ‘Front cover’
- Scaraveo Culture Club (July - August 2011) Issue 11, ‘Front cover’
- Schwarz Auf Weiss (2011) Volume 2 ‘Style needs no color’ pgs 8-9, ISBN 978-3-937946-06-1 Search this book on .
- Computer Arts (October 2010) Issue 180, pgs 14 - 15
- Nylon Guys (September 2012) Issue 127 ‘Animal Collective, Contributors, Christian Louboutin’ pgs 34,112,52
- Nylon Guys (November 2012) Issue 135, pg 136
- Nice Magazine Issue 12, ‘The Monochrome Issue’ pg 30
- Newwebpick ‘Design for Designers’ Issue 46, pgs 15 - 26
- InPrint Magazine Issue 3, pgs 4-13
- Default Magazine Issue 21, Front Cover and pgs 70-75
- 1000 Portrait Illustrations (2012) Published by Rockport Publishers ‘Contemporary Illustration from Pencil to Digital’ pgs 50,51 ISBN 978-1-59253-809-6 Search this book on .
- International Contemporary Masters Volume 7 (2013) Published by World Wide Art Books pg 263, ISBN 978-0-9802079-8-9 Search this book on .
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- Artwork (graphic arts)
- Fine Art
- Digital Art
- Future plc
- Art Directors Club of New York
- Yatzer. "ICONIC: A Celebrity-Centred Illustration Project by Alexis Marcou". Demetrios Gkiouzelis. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
- Shinabery, Kenneth (5 December 2014). "Bringing Together the Organic & Abstract". Wacom Info Channel. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
- Jared Thompson (2012). "Spectacular Illustrations by Alexis Marcou". Retrieved 12 June 2012.
- Derwent (2015). "Alexis Marcou on Acco Brands/ Derwent cataloge" (PDF). Acco Brands.
- Ovsyannykov, Igor. "Mind Blowing Illustrations by Alexis Marcou". Igor Ovsyannykov. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
- Oscar Ramos Orozco (2009). "Panda Featured on Typography Served". Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- Hikaru Hayashi (2009). "Alexis Marcou". Sophistry/ R.create inc.
- Agma Matuszczak (2012). "Arise Alexis Marcou". London: Nigel James Worldwide Limited. Retrieved 4 April 2012.
- Marcou, Alexis. "NIKE JUST DO IT". Alexis Marcou. Retrieved 21 April 2011.
- Richard Solomon. "Breakthrough Spotlight: Staff Picks". Richard Solomon Artists Representative. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
- François Hoang (2011). "Dacs United 2011". Oakland, Ca,: Abduzeedo. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
- François Hoang (2013). "DACS Third Exhibition: Reclaim". Abduzeedo. Retrieved 1 January 2013.
- Yong Ping Loo (2011). "Designers Against Child Slavery". Rojak Site. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- Adam Smith (2012). Saywell, Anna-Lisa, ed. "Trend Focus: Replicate Traditional Illustration". Advanced Photoshop. Image Publishing (101): 78–79.
- Dirk Petzold (2012). "HP Desktop Wallpapers by Alexis Marcou". We And The Color. Retrieved 24 April 2012.
- Jenn for the Behance Team (2012). "This Week's Most Appreciated Projects". Behance. Retrieved 27 April 2012.
- "Hewlett Packard". Alexis Marcou. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
- Hillary O'Keefe (2013). "Hand-Picked: June 2013". Core77. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Naim Hasa (2013). "Nike Graphic Studio Poster Show". Naim Hasan Photography. Retrieved 15 June 2013.
- Adam Smith (2012). Saywell, Anna-Lisa, ed. "Crusoe Surfer - Alexis Marcou". Advanced Photoshop. Imagine Publishing (105): 74–75.
- Webster, Garrick. "Slam dunk visuals". Garrick Webster. Retrieved 24 November 2012.
- Hu, Ray. "Flotspotting - NBA Championship Edition: Alexis Marcou's Drawings for Nike's House of Hoops". Ray Hu. Retrieved 21 Jun 2013.
- Dexter Adams (2014). "Alexis Marcou's Drawings for Nike's House of Hoops". Kubashi.
- King Cobra (2013). "House of Hoops Exclusive: KD Events Recap". Footlocker. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- Marvin Scott, Jarrett, ed. (2012). "Enter The Void". Nylon Guys. Jaclynn Jarrett. 8 (5): 112. Retrieved September 2012. Check date values in:
- Jarrett, Marvin Scott (ed.). "Christian Louboutin". Nylon Guys. Jaclynn Jarrett. 8 (5): 52. Retrieved September 2012. Check date values in:
- By Telegraph Ski and Snowboard (2014). "The best intermediate and advanced snowboards". The Telegraph. Retrieved 13 March 2014.
- Oscar Ramos Orozco (2014). "Atomic Automatic Featured on Behance". Behance/ Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 4 February 2014.
- Melissa Goh. "Alluring, Monochromatic Hand-Drawn Typeface Designed For Nike". Hills Creative Arts Pte Ltd. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
- Kaitlyn Schaeffer (2014). "Illustrator Alexis Marcou Designs an Epic Custom Typeface for Nike MLB". Complex Media Inc. Retrieved 28 June 2014.
- Mallory Rice (2012). Jarrett, Marvin Scott, ed. "Glass Act". Nylon Guys. Jaclynn Jarrett. 8 (6): 136. Retrieved November 2012. Check date values in:
- Phase band (2014). "The Wait by Phase". Retrieved 19 April 2014.
- "Alexis Marcou". Discogs. Retrieved 2017-08-08.
- Oscar Ramos Orozco (2014). "Freefly Systems Featured on Illustration Served". Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 14 December 2014.
- Pizzello, Stephen, ed. (2013). "Oz the Great and Powerful". American Cinematographer. Martha Winterhalter. 4 (94): 75. ISSN 0002-7928. Retrieved April 2013. Check date values in:
- Abduzeedo (2014). "Great Horned Owl Illustration". Abduzeedo. Retrieved 11 November 2014.
- Derwent (2014). "NEW Derwent Special Edition Inktense Tin". Derwent. Retrieved 4 March 2014.
- Oscar Ramos Orozco. "Derwent Featured on Behance". Behance/ Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 17 September 2014.
- "Buyer's Guide, Argentina, Future of Snow, Limp Whip". Powder. Source Interlink Media. 42 (1): 143, 163, Front cover. September 2013. Retrieved August 12, 2013.
- Adobe Inspiration Is - Team (2015). "Atomic Vantage Featured on Inspiration Is". Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 28 January 2015.
- By Telegraph Ski and Snowboard (2014). "All-mountain ski test winners". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 August 2014.
Atomic Vantage Theory
- Telegraph Ski and Snowboard (2014). "All-mountain ski test winners". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 August 2014.
- Sandy Balzer (2013). "Behance Artists Featured During Max Keynotes". Adobe Systems Incorporated. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
- Adobe Systems Incorporated. (2014). "MAX Day 1 keynote: Creativity on the Cutting Edge - Community". Adobe Systems Incorporated.
- Julie Bassett (2015). Saywell, Anna-Lisa, ed. "Techniques: Finishing with HDR Toning". Advanced Photoshop. Imagine Publishing (131): 29.
- Digital Abstracts team (2015). "Confirmed artists for Playing Arts 2". Retrieved February 2015. Check date values in:
- Hooped Up. "Air Jordan 7 'Lucky Number Seven' Typography". Hooped Up. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
- Zapartan, Teodora (November 19, 2015). "Alexis Marcou Designs Wall Graphics for Nike 4D Offices in Oregon". Inspirationist.
- "NIKE 4D Executive Offices by Alexis Marcou". DesignYourTrust.
- "A little conversation with Alexis Marcou". Abduzeedo Design Inspiration. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
- ArtBillboards! (2014). "New Artbillboards From Alexis Marcou". Retrieved 11 July 2014.
- Designs Mix (2013). "Expressive and vibrant illustration by Alexis Marcou". Retrieved 1 February 2013.
- Stupid Monkey. "Alexis Marcou. Unusual illustration". Retrieved 19 February 2013.
- Iral Zetina. "Artist Spotlight: Alexis Marcou". Serbin Communications, Inc. Retrieved 17 March 2015.
- The Design Inspiration (2014). "Design Process of Nike Dominator by Alexis Marcou". The Design Inspiration. Retrieved 20 October 2014.
- Erin Kirkpatrick (2012). "Serene Snow-Powdered Sketches". Trend Thunder. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
- Garrick Webster (2010). Carney, Rob, ed. "Sex & Design" (Print). Computer Arts. Future Publishing (180): 14. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- Watson, Rebecca. "Featured Artist: Alexis Marcou". lovepencils.co.uk. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
- Adriana De Barros (2012). "Artist Uses Makeup Brushes Instead Of Paint Brushes". Scene 360. Retrieved 23 May 2012.
- Alexis Marcou – Official site (related)
- Alexis Marcou on Hypocrite Design Featured on May 28, 2014.
- Alexis Marcou on Lifo Interviewed by Alkisti Georgiou on March 19, 2014.
- Alexis Marcou on Fubiz Interviewed by Baptiste Bourgain on September 5, 2011.
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