2020 Monuments & Canyons Artist: Mick McGinty


Mick McGinty was born and raised in Northeast Nebraska growing up in the small town of South Sioux City. He had an average exposure to art and the creation of it that most people get, growing up in a small town. Art classes in High School wasn't a huge priority in the 1970's but he was encouraged by teachers to think about pursuing a career in art some day. After graduation from High School he spent two years in the Army serving a year of that time in South Korea. During that time he was often asked to use his artistic talents by creating logos and murals of various kinds which was a welcome diversion from Army life.

Returning home from the military in 1973, he found his way to Southern California by the next year. He immediately found work at Knott's Berry Farm drawing pastel portraits at Bell's Portrait Studio, founded by the artist it is named after, Claude Bell, who was the sculptor/artist that created the huge dinosaur attraction near Palm Springs. For the next 3 years McGinty produced thousands of portraits and commissioned pastel paintings for visitors of the Park while also attending Fullerton Junior College. While living in Fullerton he married his wife Kerry in 1976 and after earning his AA Degree in 1997, moved to Pasadena to continue his art career at Art Center College of Design. He entered as a Third Term Scholarship Student and graduated with High Honors with a BA Degree in Illustration in 1979.

Soon after graduation from Art Center he was hired by Willardson and White Design in Santa Monica, California. He immediately started working on album covers, movie posters, and major product advertising campaigns, producing images for movies such as, Superman, Flash Gordon, Gremlins and Batman as well as album cover art for, .38 Special, The Police, and poster campaigns for MTV's launch, Adidas magazine ads, and McDonalds promotions, to name a few. He also illustrated covers for Time Magazine and Mad Magazine.