About Me

I'm David Marshall, a Boston-area professional artist with 20+ years of content beautification. Heavy emphasis on brand and usability. Capabilities include front-end web development, web design (UX/UI), graphic design, illustration, and creating the occasional comic book. Clients and employers include Agencyport Software, Merrill Lynch, Computerworld magazine, Houghton-Mifflin, Fantagraphics Books, and SpiderBaby Graphix. Currently taking on new projects.

Marshall Art Studio is my contractor identity. With the more logical domain names being unavailable (this was in the AOL era), I quickly chose one based on an old nickname.

I'm an artist who's fumbled his way into enterprise level web development. By high school it was clear the only thing I was better at than anyone else around me was drawing pictures. This led me to going to Massachusetts College of Art for a BFA in commercial art (an antiquated name I still think is accurate).

Part Coder
Front-end development
HTML/SCSS/CSS
Javascript (I try)
Responsive & accessibility
Swearing at my computer
Coder Designer
Part Designer
User experience
Visual design
Listening to client feedback
Articulating design direction
"Making it pop"

My struggling freelance illustration and comic book career got redirected to graphic design when Boston Phoenix design director and Barbie enthusiast Debbie Klein told me, "Nobody needs an illustrator, but everyone needs designers."

That 100% correct advice should be on a coffee mug. While working for the Phoenix, my skill at making great-looking ads for escort services and strip clubs increased exponentially.

This began my 1990s push to corporate work. Career highlights include working for Gregory Fossella Associates, Midnight Oil Studios, Hill Holiday, Ingalls Quinn & Johnson, JWG Associates, WFNX, International Data Corporation, MacGraw-Hill, and Houghton Mifflin. Some of those companies are still around.

That print experience transitioned to web design, which led to the last two decades of corporate web development. The code base evolved from its infancy of Adobe PageMill, embedded styles, and font tags to its current adolescence of CSS preprocessors, responsive grid systems, and javascript frameworks. I occasionally crack open my OS9 Powerbook G3 just to see how far we've come. But that's a blog for another day.

Where would I be now without Debbie's well timed advice? Probably accosting Newbury Street tourists with, "Psst! I did a full page ad for Foxy Lady in 1988. Gimme a buck!" Not bad for a poor kid from Springfield. The best is yet to come.

I'm a Capricorn who earned his BFA from Massachusetts College of Art in 1986.