Q#1: Are you a Bay Area Native? and if not, how long have you lived in the Bay? Mark: I was born in Utica in upstate NY. My mother Barbara and I moved to the Bay Area shortly after my father Vaughn passed away in 1975 . I lived in Oakland and Berkeley till 1991, when my wife Molly and daughter Zara moved to Northampton, MA to join my friends that invented the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. After a decade out there we finally returned to SF in 2005. So I consider myself a Bay Area native as I’ve spent the most time here.
Q#2: When did you start on the creative path you are currently on? Mark: I was highly encouraged by my very creative father at a very early age. At 4 years old he would give me a dollar to do a comic strip for him. Actually he was keeping me busy so he could work on his strips, I’m sure. By the time I was 12 I had honed my skills to the point where my father said “we will be Bode and son” and did great collabs together. He died a few days later. But I was glad my hard work had paid off and I was able to impress him. 3 years later I colored his black and white comic book “ZOOKS” for Heavy Metal magazine. I was still a kid in high school but clocking in dollars following in his foot steps.
Q#3: Where do you find your inspiration? Mark: Creativity comes in waves. Some times I can’t find it like a lost sock.. I’ll be looking for it and it just seems to have disappeared. Other times it hits me like a tsunami and I create a huge body of work in a short period. The next story that I’m writing and drawing is a 5th chapter of Cobalt 60. I was standing in front of the Coliseum in Rome and the story hit me hard.. like a million words came flowing out. I couldn’t stop my hand from writing, like it was writing itself, maybe even channeling it from beyond. When I do my mural work it’s really what I want to paint at the time. I don’t like to be preachy or political. I just like to get lost in another world and take people with me.
Q#4: What was the first piece of vinyl you ever purchased? Mark: If you’re talking music it might be Iron Wolf or Three Dog Night. I was 8 I think. If you’re talking toys it would be Snoopy in an astronaut suit. I slept with it like a lumpy blanket.
Q#5: Anything else you’d like to share? a joke/quote? Mark: My ultimate desire as far as my work goes is to create an erotic theme park for adults complete with cheech’s tunnel of love and tittied ferris wheels and boobie bumper cars. Of course the erotic theme park wouldn’t be complete without a brothel and casino. Just saying.. the masses would love this place!