Asked what inspires his black and white hand-drawn pieces created with ink pens, illustrator Cosmo Mulford (below) says his style is influenced by comic books and Japanese art. English illustrator and author Aubrey Beardsley and Czech painter and graphic artist Alphonse Mucha are also inspirations.
“Since I was able to pick up a pen I’ve been drawing, it’s all I ever wanted to do,” he explains. “I got my career start from exhibiting at New Designers and One Year In - New Designers.”
Based in the medieval market town of Shrewsbury on England’s Welsh border, Mulford is self-employed and juggles various commissions as well as his own personal projects. He encourages any aspiring artist to do the same as it "keeps your skills sharp and style evolving and improving. It also enhances your professional portfolio".
The sttention to detail given by the artist to his discipline is highly impressive. “I love an economy of line with intricate detail. My work is 95% hand drawn with a small amount of editing in Photoshop to tidy things up,” adds Mulford, elaborating on his style. “I do a lot of roughs in pencil before getting to my favourite part, the inking, which involves a myriad of equipment ranging from technical pens to brushes.”
Mulford is currently working on creating a full set of tarot cards, which he plans to take to market to either be used or simply admired as art. "I’ve been working on them intermittently for four years," he concludes. "The style is heavily influenced by Japanese painters such as Hokusai and Hiroshige and combines intricate detail with bold dramatic images to convey layers of meaning.” Check some of them out below and see more of work here.
Wheel of Fortune
Ace of Swords