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Originally, Mike Wilson studied to become an illustrator. His biggest ambition was to have a piece on the cover of TV Guide magazine, just like a personal hero early in his career, Bill Nelson. Mike was a bit sidetracked during college and fell in love with the entire process of advertising. He realized that creating concepts for marketing would also allow him a chance to pursue many of his other interests: writing, sequential design, 3D design, packaging, animation, film, photography, music, design, and yes…illustration. 


He really doesn’t draw conventionally these days (except to entertain small children.) But his illustration background is invaluable as he creates surrealistic images digitally, combining personal and stock imagery which is manipulated into budget-friendly images for marketing. Keep scrolling to see a sampling of some of that work.


Vending machine was created using three stock images, manipulated vector logos, color alterations, and rendered background treatments, shadows and highlights into a single image.

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A range of background source images, a construction worker and a large dump truck digitally cut in half, a few carefully placed highlight effects and shadow treatments combine for an interesting industrial image.


Two simple stock images combined with a digitally-generated background treatment and vector type imprint helps create an easily-manipulated visual. Base art was updated to create a series of ads with a similar theme featuring different box content.

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