Bob Wakelin, the artist behind some of the most iconic videogame cover art of the 1980s, has passed away.
And while Wakelin may not be a household name, if you're at all familiar with videogames in the '80s then you'll almost certainly be aware of his work. Perhaps best known for his creations at Ocean Software, Wakelin lent his artistic expertise to everything from Parasol Stars: Rainbow Island 2 to Operation Wolf and Superbowl.
Often, the quality of Wakelin's designs outweighed the caliber of the games they fronted. I quite liked 1987's Wizball, but just look at its gorgeous cover art:
In the wake of his passing, Motherboard republished a 2015 interview with Wakelin, which is absolutely worth reading in full. If you're short on time, I found this excerpt particularly interesting:
I smoked cannabis by day and drank beer at night. I lived in the inner city and many of my friends were unemployed ex-punks and people who liked to live, for want of a better term, "alternative" lifestyles. My studio flat was a good place for them to hang out while I worked. We would listen to music, drink coffee and smoke large amounts of cannabis.
It was a purely social thing—in a way, my life was just one long social gathering as I would move on to the pub with a different set of friends after I'd finished working for the day. I have no idea what games developers indulged themselves with as I didn't really know many at that point.
Touching tributes to the late artist have since appeared on a number of social media outlets. The following image has been doing the rounds on Twitter, which nicely illustrates the range of Wakelin's work.