Beck pays tribute to ‘SpongeBob’ creator Stephen Hillenburg, who penned his early artwork

The pair also used to be neighbours

Beck has paid tribute to SpongeBob SquarePants creator Stephen Hillenburg, speaking of how the late animator created the artwork for some of his early releases.

Hillenburg died on Monday (November 27) from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), which he was diagnosed with last year. He was 57 years old.

After Spongebob network Nickelodeon said they were “incredibly saddened by the news”, tributes from the entertainment industry and wider world poured in.

Now, ‘Colors’ artist Beck has written about his past collaborator and former neighbour – while sharing the artwork that Hillenburg provided.

“Very sad to hear the news of the passing of Stephen Hillenburg,” Beck began the post, “who years and years ago used to be my neighbour and kindly did the artwork for the first music that I ever released. The photo from the Record was shot behind his apartment.”

Very sad to hear the news of the passing of Stephen Hillenberg, who years and years ago used to be my neighbor and…

Posted by Beck on Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Beck said that he “always remembered him as a genuinely sweet guy”, adding: “I was lucky to get to run into him by chance at the airport a few months ago.

“Sending my condolences to his family and to all the friends who are missing him today and thinking about old times.”

Check out the message and Hillenburg’s Beck artwork above.

Hillenburg began working on SpongeBob after directing and writing another Nickelodeon series, Rocko’s Modern Life. His first episode aired on May 1, 1999, with 250 episodes hitting screens since. Hillenburg also wrote big-screen versions of the show – The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (which he also produced and directed) and its sequel Sponge Out Of Water.

Stephen Hillenburg is survived by Karen, his wife of 20 years, his son Clay, mother Nancy, and brother Brian.

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