Bruce has designed nearly 40 pop-up books for publishers, museums and companies. His clients include Simon and Schuster, Random House; Little, Brown and Company; Melcher Media; becker&mayer!; Disney-Hyperion Books for Children; Candlewick Press; Sports Illustrated Kids; Up With Paper; Disney Productions; the Museum of Modern Art; Insight Editions and many more.
Perhaps his biggest audience to date ironically has not come through books, but his work in films: Bruce designed the pop-ups for Disney’s “Enchanted” seen in the opening scenes and throughout the movie.
Bruce’s interest in three dimensional art can be traced back to his time as an art student at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Although in the painting program, his works increasingly became layered, shaped, multi-media constructions. Later, while freelancing at a design agency in Houston, Texas, Bruce was offered a project from Minute Maid Foods. The project’s goal was to create a mailer that would capture a three dimensional focus, while introducing their first foray into juice packs featuring Hi-C’s Ectocooler. The mailer’s original design incorporated optical illusions, 3-D glasses and a pop-up. In the end the pop-up was the main focus. A year later, Bruce received a call from Ottenheimer Publishers in Baltimore, MD, where the art director, Bea Jackson, offered him freelance work designing pop-ups.
This was a moment that changed Bruce’s career goals and life. Until the time of the Minute Maid commission, Bruce had never even owned a pop-up book! For seven years he freelanced with Ottenheimer, and eventually obtained a commission from Robin Corey at Simon and Schuster for Marjorie Priceman’s Little Red Riding Hood in 2000.
Bruce has been honored to work with some of today’s leading illustrators and artists such as Chuck Fischer, Mo Willems, Marjorie Priceman, The Charles Schultz Studio (Paige Braddock), Dan Andreason, Mick Coulas, Sachiko Yoshikawa, Jason O’Malley and many many more, even getting to work with Elizabeth Murray (one of his college art heroes!) and Ginny Ruffner.
Bruce lives in Houston, Texas with his lovely wife, Lori, two beautiful daughters, Nicole and Lydia, along with 1 dog, Ginger, and 4 cats: Patches (the million dollar cat..so named after a successful, but costly stay at Texas A&M Veterinary Hospital), Tigger, Holly, and Cleo. Bruce obviously enjoys a crowd.
Recently, Mark Mitchell visited me in my studio for a one hour interview/discussion. Three hours later (!) we wrapped up our conversation. Mark has begun posting segments of the interview on Youtube. Here is the first of the segments. In this first segment, we are discussing Harry Potter: The Pop-Up Book: