The Pin-up Files

Marcus Gray pin-up artist


Marcus Gray started his first "girlie" pictures in 1992, initially inspired by Alphonse Mucha, and quickly established a "retro futuristic" pin-up style of his own

"I want to express the experience of what it is for a woman to wear latex, feel aroused, feel sensual, dangerous and beautiful ... these women know the power of their sexuality and the profound effect it has over men."

Marcus Gray pinup artist

Born in 1971 in Glasgow, Scotland, Marcus Gray was brought up on a rich diet of Sci-fi TV, films and comics. Self taught, his first proper paintings were with the airbrush in commercial art and he also worked as a graphic designer for several years. A turning point came in 1992. Whilst browsing a bookshop, he discovered the work of Alphonse Mucha. His work has been published in several fetish magazines, including Skin Two. He also writes and draws his own erotic comics.

On technique and influences, Marcus says:

"People ask how I Achieve the results that appear in my works. Most of my art is done in Gouache and colour pencil. Gouache can be applied thickly for background tones or progressively layered as light washes which I do to create flesh tones. The combination of further light washes and colour pencil builds up the final modeling on the figure work. I use a rough water-colour paper that can lend itself to dry brushing and in creating other interesting textural qualities. I also sometimes use gold leaf and indian ink.

"Recently I've started using gold leaf mostly because I adore the breathtaking work of Gustav Klimt. Other artists I greatly admire are Olivia de Berardinis and Hajime Sorayama, Alphonse Mucha, Aubrey Beardsley, George Petty, Syd Mead, Lebbeus Woods, Dave Stevens, Hugh Ferriss, Masamune Shirow and Jean Giraud (Moebius).

"There's darkness and light, pleasure and pain in everyone's life. It's all about creating a powerful balance of these qualities that defines for me the essence of beauty."

All images in this gallery are copyright © Marcus Gray. All rights reserved.