Craig Markus is a creative director, designer, artist and father. His work has appeared across all medium including film, print, outdoor, social platforms, and events, as well as product design, identities, and in private collections.
Craig’s passions and interests run wide and deep – from outer space to the inner workings of the human spirit. He is multifarious and counts among his many influences Ed Ruscha, Gerhardt Richter, Bill Hicks, Stan Lee, and Bugs Bunny. However, nothing has been more fulfilling to him than having raised his two sons Luke and Dean as a single parent. And he considers managing to keep his balance, his priorities and his wits to be his greatest accomplishment.
Craig was born and raised in Los Angeles and has lived in New York for the past 30 years. He has been listening and creating since birth and has degrees in Communication and Design from UCLA and Art Center College of Design respectively, as well as an MBA from Steinbeis University’s Berlin School of Creative Leadership.
Markus began his professional career as an Art Director at Ogilvy & Mather. From there he became a Creative Director at Deutsch NY. After helping grow Deutsch, Craig went to McCann/NY where he co-founded TAG, guiding young adult efforts for clients such as Absolut, InBev, Levi's, Verizon and the launch of Xbox. He subsequently moved into the role of Executive Creative Director at McCann after helping win the US Army account. The 'Army Strong' campaign remains one of the most recognizable of the past 10 years. Most recently Craig was the ECD at Cramer Kressalt NY. Along the way, he founded Rage, Grace & Partners as a consultancy based on his thesis work at BSCL.
Craig’s work spans the full spectrum of the human experience: funny, poignant, intense, tender. All of it, intuitive and provocative as he pushes to connect truth with meaningfulness. He believes that ultimately the job is to get people to care about something they didn't know that they should, or even could care about.
Craig deeply holds that a well thought out point-of-view is critical, a well-told story connects us, courage reaps rewards, and that leadership is as much a creative job as any. He is tenacious, with much of his best work having come amidst the most challenging situations.
In 2010, Craig turned back to art and in particular, painting. The classical sensibility that can be seen in his commercial work also finds its way onto his canvasses. Craig’s paintings contain images from his past and present and are driven by a need to sensitively express himself.
With both of his sons set on their own journeys, Luke, a graduate of the USNA '19 and training as a Marine Pilot and Dean, a budding artist and student at USC, he now spends most of his free time in front of a canvas, next to his partner Ivy, or being dragged down the streets of Brooklyn by his dog, Cash.