Mark was blogging and promoting quality Bible design when all he had to review were out of print Bibles. Mark’s Bible Design Blog quickly became the TripAdvisor of Bible craft. Small outfits like R.L. Allan were brought out of obscurity through Mark’s passion for Bible design. Many other publishers were either born through Mark’s illustrious blogs or began to buy into the idea that it was a good thing to make an excellent house and platform for the world’s most precious book.
Mark’s Bible Design Blog has been instrumental (understatement) in reigniting interest in Bible craft. When publishers had essentially jettisoned the idea of anything other than the mantra ‘cheaper is better’ – Mark began a crusade of sorts to make Bible craft – beauty, quality, innovation, durability – an appealing alternative. I would assert that it gave new life to Allan, gave birth to Schuyler, spawned ‘select Bible’ lines in publishers like Crossway and Tyndale and may have kept Cambridge Bibles viable in the US market. Mark’s own innovation has led to the popularization of the Single Column Paragraph format as well as Journaling Bibles. Mark has also been a Bible design consultant on countless typesetting designs from virtually every major Bible publisher. Schuyler Bible Publishers has formally and informally consulted Mark about virtually every Bible project that it undertakes. If it seems like we’re singing Mark’s praises – well we are – he is the single most important player in the Quality Bible Renaissance.
Mark also has some odd quirks that should be noted. For example his passion for Bible design has also led to the art of Bible gymnastics, i.e. bending Bibles in often unnatural positions….Mark also has a sort of co-dependent relationship with fountain pens and journals, but we’ll draw the curtain over some of these less flattering idiosyncrasies.
But in all seriousness – as evangelicalbible.com continues unprecedented growth along with Bible craftsmanship from a larger and larger variety of enthusiastic sources, we want to take a moment to tip our hat to the most influential person that brought this to fruition, J. Mark Bertrand.