Gorgeous Portraits on Vintage Maps Create New Worlds

Mark Powell is known for his portraits and illustrations of people and birds on vintage envelopes dating as far back as 1756, and with his most recent series, the images do not disappoint. Utilizing old maps as his canvas and a Bic biro pen as his instrument of choice, his illustrations are nothing short of beautiful. The drawings work in tandem with the maps to pull the viewer in, making them wonder more about the history of the subject.

Map Portrait

Each image in the series can take Powell anywhere from a couple of hours to an entire month to complete, depending on the size, surface, and amount of detail of the image. Powell says that he chose old maps as his canvas because he believes they give his subjects a more profound background and greater story. “They compliment each other,” he explains. “I hope [it] leads the viewer to wonder, and maybe create, a history for the two.”

Map Portrait

Like most of his other work, Powell draws his portraits by hand, using only a pen. “I have chosen to use biro as it is the most common tool I can find, which means I can show what can be done with such things,” he says. “I hope it shows what anyone can do; art supplies are not always needed to create something.” Powell’s illustrations are perfect examples of creating something extraordinary out of the ordinary.

Check out more of his work here.

Map Portrait Map Portrait

[Via: This Is Colossal]

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