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Ian Murray

Ian Murray - Retro conceptual illustrator. UK

Strange and wonderful characters, curious symbols and vintage patterns and textures give Cheshire-based illustrator Ian Murray’s work its own unique look and feel. When he looks into a topic, he sees things others can’t and visualises them for clients who are looking for imagery that stands apart from the rest.
Although he’s a vastly experienced illustrator, Ian is obsessed with productivity and constantly reads art and design books to find out how other creatives work, and what their systems are. He received a first in Illustration from Kingston University before going on to do an MA in Communication Design at Manchester Metropolitan University.


Confessing to a love of order and neatness, Ian is nevertheless drawn to worn-looking textures. The result is a tension in his work between strong compositions and design elements, and the chaos of his mark making, old bits of paper, textures and patterns. He works in limited colour palettes and tends to save ones that work for future use. He also keeps his handmade ink and print marks on his computer – catalogued and ready for deployment at any moment.


Ian’s work is all about effective colour combinations, strong composition, considered shapes and thoughtful concepts.

Client list

Some of Ian’s clients include the BBC, British Gas, Canon, Future Publishing, Halfords, The Halifax, Mercedes-Benz, New York Law School, NewYork Jazz Festival, Oxford University Press, Penguin, Quarto Publishing,The Radio Times, Reuters Transport For London and Wittards.
What’s not to say about Ian? Professional, dependable, conceptual, responsive, etc… He’s everything you want when commissioning an artist. I enjoyed working with him and will definitely use him again in the near future.
Cary Bates - Art Director, Thriving Family magazine - USA
The Design Solution commissioned Ian Murray to be one of a selection of illustrators to create images for our 2015 desktop calendar. We chose Ian as his style is distinct and bold. We asked the illustrators to depict cities that The Design Solution had worked, including either the airport or an airplane in their illustrations, Ian was given Toronto, Canada. We were very happy with the final images and Ian was a pleasure to work with, he made the process very smooth, sending samples of his progress, and was very receptive to feedback.
Helen Mair - Freelance Associate Director, The Design Solution
Ian was pleasure to do business with. He worked within my budget and deadline, and was very professional throughout the entire process, communicating every step of the way. Everyone on our design team is very pleased with the illustrations he did for us this year. He knocked it out of the park. Thanks for making me look like a rock star!
Patricia Sener - Executive Director, Coney Island Brighton Beach Open Water Swimmers - USA
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