Thursday, May 18, 2006

New York's gone all Upper Class II

All due respect to the Ford Crown Victoria, the yellow checker cab urgently needs a makeover. Here's my proposal, based on a 1937 Rolls Royce: spacious, distinctive, stylishly impractical and wastefully extravangant. Who could ask for anything more?


Zen and the art of logistics

"It’s going back to basics," says Phil Young, Head of IT at Amtrak Express Parcels. "I’ve got a tattoo on my shoulder of a Chinese symbol that means ‘simplicity’. That's what it's about. Keep costs down, keep turnover up, you’ve got to make a profit." Commissioned by Paul Martin for an interview in IET Review.


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Le moment est venu

Kriek Belle-Vue is produced by the Belgian tradition of mixing fresh cherries and Lambic beer (spontaneously fermented beer made in Brussels). Jef and Jos, brewers of Kriek Belle-Vue, are celebrated for their laconic wit, uneventful lives and KBV moments. This portrait of Jef and Jos was commissioned by Duval Guillaume Brussels on behalf of InBev and used as a KBV beermat.

Riding with T-rex

Tyrannosaurus Sue - the largest, most complete, best preserved T-rex fossil yet discovered - stands 13 feet high at the hips and 42 feet long from head to tail. Weighing an estimated seven tons, she would have been longer, and probably faster than a double decker bus. Commissioned by Harcourt Education for a spread about fossil hunters of the Cheyenne River.

Friday, May 12, 2006

New York's gone all Upper Class

Advertising for first-class long-haul aviation tends to play out along familiar lines: svelte cabin attendants, exquisite food, exotic locations, balding men in suits etc. Virgin Atlantic's Upper Class deliberately sets out to subvert these well-worn themes with a playful use of irony, appealing to a more youthful / aspirational / self-aware audience. The Statue of Liberty delicately sips tea from bone china . . .


Enough to make your skin crawl

There are almost 4000 species of cockroach worldwide, apparently. Most live in tropical / subtropical forests and aren't considered a threat to public health. About 10 species, however, have adapted to human environments and become the 'pest' we know and hate, a carrier of diseases such as salmonella, typhoid, leprosy and even bubonic plague.

Penna Plc on behalf of Ecolab (world leader in commercial pest control) asked me to illustrate a series of recruitment ads for surveyors, technicians and sales executives. This one takes the form of a natural history display cabinet, with specimens lovingly collected and pinned down for scientific examination. The final sample Cockroachus Historicus has been brutally crushed: unlike the competition, Ecolab takes no prisoners.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

San Fran's gone all Upper Class

As part of Virgin Atlantic's £5m multi-media marketing campaign, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y+R (Virgin's London advertising agency) recently commissioned a series of images promoting the Upper Class Suite. Appearing in the UK press, internet and 96 sheet billboards across London, the illustrations mix cliches of English landed gentry with familiar aspects of New York, San Francisco, Sydney, Hong Kong and Tokyo. Bruce Lee wears a monocle, an easy rider hunts foxes . . .


Friday, May 05, 2006

How to be an English cricketer

Commissioned by The Wisden Cricketer as part of a feature on playing cricket for England, this took me back (previous previous) to my days of Airfix model kits: small fingers fumbling with even smaller bits of plastic, slowly dissolving into a single formless lump of Bostik and Humbrol.