Welcome to the home of my latest and, hopefully, my greatest endeavors into the illustrative, typographic and design world.
The current selection is part of a rebranding effort for DONET, a cloud-based internet service provider, now known as DATAYARD. Jan Ostendorf of FORGE, a Dayton Ohio design firm, needed visual content to bring his train system metaphor to life. These heroic images were a perfect fit for me!
The iconic figure has been a fascination of mine. The WPA...
Pepsi Air Show. I have a fascination with the WWII era, so a chance to create a vintage air show poster was very interesting. Most of my heroic images are of dudes, so I enjoyed the research and execution of my homage to the classic pin-up girl!
Bo Jackson Sweet Potato Pie. We all knew Bo for his ability on the college and NFL grid iron, but who knew the man can bake a pretty mean pie!
Haines Socks. What I remember most about this project is what the Agency was willing to accept as "finished art". I felt I had to elevate their expectations a bit.
Lowe's Garden Club. The big box home improvement store has become somewhat of a museum, showcasing many of the projects I've been involved in. I tried to get the folks at Lowe's to strategically place a bench at each isle end cap or shelf where my art appears so one could sit and reflect on the inner meaning and artist intent. They said they would get back to me...
Longaberger. This was part of a larger campaign to brand the Longaberger Village which is a mecca for the craft and basket lovers of the world. And yes, their headquarters building IS shaped like a very large basket!
MURALS, MOSAICS and RELIEF SCULPTURE represent an interesting facet of my career. Designing the "Spirit of Baseball" relief sculpture and the murals commemorating the Red's 1869 and 1975 world championship teams was a unique opportunity to be a part of something that will be in the public eye for a long time to come.
The Tampa Historical Museum involved designing the base art for what became replica neon signs that highlighted points of interest in Tampa's diverse history.
Whenever you are asked to work on a long-standing iconic image such as the Budweiser Clydesdales, the biggest challenge is striking a creative balance. You want to add your own personal point of view while always considering the equity of the images that came before it. The Budweiser Clydesdales are a symbol that is recognizable and loved by all ages. The goal was to update the logo so that it would be more relevant and appealing to current Budweiser consumers.
This project made me a master of the miniscule. Extreme attention was paid to the details. With the Budweiser Clydesdales being such a well-known brand, a lot of care goes into how they are portrayed. Tweaks and requests like dial down the musculature; the eyes are too close; skew closer to the original illustration; the brass color needs adjusting, were common occurrences throughout the process.
We chose to use vector instead of PhotoShop for two reasons:
First, this logo had to be reproduced in a hi-res format, in a wide range of sizes (ex. clothing price tags, rear of the trailer).
Second, creating the logo in vector allowed us to convert it to 1C, 2C and 4C embroidery logo quite easily.
To create a traditional “painting” in vector art was a stretch and a challenge. Technically speaking, the gradient mesh tool in Adobe Illustrator became my best friend. We took vector to a whole new level in that respect. Vector provides the flexibility to use the art at any size. No bitmap worries here.
Bud Light Splash
The refreshing splash of water droplets that adorn the Bud Light logo looked great on the packaging, but once they were enlarged to, say, the side of an 48 foot eighteen wheeler, the pixelated image simply didn’t hold up. “We could get by with the existing image if our trucks were only viewed from a long distance while traveling at 60 MPH,” stated Andy Dyer, Design Manager at Switch: Liberate Your Brand in St. Louis, “but these trucks are commonly seen at delivery points at distances of less than 20 feet away. We needed to upgrade the image to make it a nice high resolution image no matter what.”
Andy recalled a similar project where artist Mark Riedy created a brand refresh of the iconic Budweiser Clydesdale, all in scalable vector art, that they used to accommodate a wide variety of sizes in which the art needed to be reproduced. “Mark created an amazingly realistic rendering of the Clydesdale, all in digital vector format. We were able to enlarge the art to any size without any image degradation and retain crystal clear clarity. That is a crucial big plus for these large format applications,” stated Dyer. With that project in mind, Mark was the obvious choice for the Bud Light project.
“I had to keep in mind that these water droplets I was painting would print at the size of an ostrich egg,” said Riedy. “The advantage of vector for these large applications is that no matter what size we print, the art maintains its original integrity.”
Looks for Mark’s Bud Light splash on a road near you and don’t be afraid to take a closer look…perhaps after it has come to a complete stop! Far as Mark goes, Andy is convinced he still sees water droplets when he closes his eyes at night.
ILLUSTRATED TRAVEL POSTERS are a time-honored tradition in the history of print marketing. These iconic images capture the romanticism of an era when travel was truly an adventure, one steeped in luxury, romance and a sense of adventure.
Lettering is the art of drawing or constructing letterforms to create unique typographic images. Calligraphy, on the other hand, achieves its unique letters through penmanship or the act of writing. As you can see from my sketch, I am a lettering artist.
Art and lettering for packaging has been a cornerstone of the work I've created. Just the other day I was grocery shopping with my son and was pointing out all the various packages I had some hand in creating. "Cool, Dad", he said, as he reached for the competitors product. I'll have to have a serious talk with that boy!
The iconic, heroic, and idealistic look of the work I create has long been a staple of the advertising world. There is a timeless appeal to presenting a product, personality or service in a way that is "bigger than life".
Airborne Bikes. Capturing the freedom felt on the trails.
Honda Small Engines Division. Working with Honda's ad agency, we developed a series of ads with a number of things "wrong" in the scenes but the one thing "right" was choosing Honda equipment.
JPMorgan Chase. These transportation themed ads were for the international banking and investment division of Chase. The concept was to capture the romance and intrigue of exotic locations through a travel poster motif.
Take Flight. This was a proposed poster for Harley Davidson. The idea was to compare the new generation V-ROD bike to the adventuresome spirit of early flight.
I've had the opportunity to work on the rebranding and updating of several well known brand personalities.
Red Baron - This frozen pizza brand wanted to update their iconic namesake. More of the story to come...
Mr. Peanut - I've worked on several different versions of this famous legume. More of the story to come...
The whole idea behind ICONS and INFOGRAPHICS is that they transcend language. They speak for themselves.