I grew up with artists. Two of my grand parents were fine artists. My grandfather had made a business of it. I remember as a small child seeing his large canvases, and smelling the oil paint. His house was full of his paintings. I remember one of them to be in the living room. It was larger than life. We used to visit at least twice a week. When we visited, my grandfather would give me paper and pens and I would spend hours drawing and painting. By age six, I had decided that I would make art for a living. Here are two pictures of my grandfather’s paintings.
I spent hours copying drawings and paintings. I became a chronic doodler. When I was a teenager I attended an art class at a place called the Johannesburg Art Foundation. I developed my love of drawing there. The teacher encouraged me to audition for the Johannesburg school of Art Ballet Drama and Music. It was a high school in which the students specialized in art subjects. To my absolute joy I made it into the school. Whilst all of my old friends were studying accountancy and maths, I was studying graphics and photography. It seemed too good to be true.
I wanted to be one of the masters. Donatello, Michelangelo, Leonardo, … and then I discovered Mad magazine.
From that moment onwards I wanted to draw cartoons. I copied Don Martin and eventually decided I wanted to be Jack Davis. Jack Davis illustrations have raw energy oozing out of them. I wanted to be able to put that same energy into my illustrations. I’m not sure I have the same raw energy in my work, but I am not really a raw energy kind of guy. I still love Jack’s work though.
The story carries on. I am now running my own illustrated logo and mascot design business. I’m still madly inspired by great illustration. As a result I’m always trying to improve my craft. Also the family art tradition carries on. My seven year old daughter decided she wants to be an artist too.
Hope you enjoyed my story. What inspires you? Let me know in the comments below.
Sukkahmart Australia contacted me recently to create a flyer that was both eye catching and also informative. On top of that, the client had a problem he needed solving. The business sells its product once a year. Every year the client received a huge amount of emails asking the same 10 questions. The client wrote an FAQ on his website, but this did not help the problem at all, every year he still received the same 10 questions.
When presented with this problem, an evil plot hatched in my mind. What we would do is make a list of the 10 questions. I would then design 2 cartoon mascots and make a comic which presented the questions in a humorous way. One character would frantically ask the questions and the other would be calm. At the end of the comic, the calm character wouldn’t answer the questions, but would mention that all the answers to the questions are on the FAQ of the website.
The thinking behind the idea is, we want the readers to feel like we read their minds. Every problem that they could have thought of had been taken care of. The best part is we didn’t need to read their minds at all. They had done all the mind reading for us by sending the email questions. All we had to do was appeal to their emotions, press the right buttons, and send them to the right place.
Need mascot illustration? Feel free to contact me.
#mascot #cartoon #marketing #design
In this post I want to discuss something essential to good mascot design. It is extremely important that a company mascot is instantly recognizable. It should make an immediate impact on the viewer.
Look at the mascot design above. Notice how it doesn’t take that much imagination to know what the character looks like without details.
One way to achieve impact is to make sure that your company mascot has a good silhouette. This simply means that if the mascot had no details at all, the viewer would still know exactly what it is. The silhouette should be so good, that the entire mood and personality should be apparent without any detail. If the mascot designer did a good job creating a great silhouette, the visual impact will be there the first second the viewer sees it. After that, the viewer will then scan the image for details. This means the details enhance the impact created by the silhouette.
Think of silhouette as the foundations for a strong building. If the foundations are not strong, the building will be shaky.
Do you have any questions about mascot design? Let me know in the comments below.
Need mascot design? Contact me for a quote.
#mascot design #cartoon #branding #marketing #illustration
Have you ever thought about what impression you want your business to make? If you can narrow it down to a few words, it can be expressed in picture form. Well designed pictures make a lasting impact. Lets face it, every business has a logo. A mascot can express so much more and can make a much more lasting impression.
Here are a few ways I enhanced a company message using a cartoon mascot.
The rationale behind this corporate mascot is to create something that effectively communicates, (like the name Zoom! expresses,) the company’s guaranteed fast turn around times.
1. The first approach I took is to think symbolically. We all know the folk story of the tortoise and the hare. The story presents the hare as a fast mover and the tortoise as slow. Really the story is about the idea that slow and steady is more effective than fast and intense action. As a result everyone who grew up with this story, on some level subconsciously understands that rabbits symbolize speed.
2. My Second approach was to express speed using graphic elements. I used fluid lines such as the ears and arms, and also dramatic diagonal lines such as the diagonal lines of the legs and shoes. As a rule diagonal lines and fluid curves have a dynamic feel. I also chose two hot clashing colours to portray a sense of urgency.
Let me know what you think in the comments below.
Do you need Mascot design? Contact me for a quote.