Eric Carl (who also brought us these vintage sci-fi book covers and these classic logos) has a beautifully scanned set of vintage ads from magazines up. They’re all high res so it’s a goldmine for textures and overlays. I love how magazine print breaks up at high resolution. The moire patterns are very useful when blown up in compositions; I use them a lot for posters.
See Related: Oil Company Ephemera
A few selections from the artwork portion of these Science and Technology adverts. I often like the text layouts on these old advertisements, but in these cases it was the artwork that caught my attention. I see a little Matthew Lyons in that first one. Be sure to check out the rest of the set.
I was really excited to see this ad campaign by Panamericana School of Art and Design, to me it shows how much further you should push yourself be it making music, design, video, etc. I remember early in school you’d usually take the first idea you had that the teacher ok’d and ran with it but the older and older I become the more I steer away from even my first 10 ideas I come up with on a project, I know then that it might form into something a bit more unique.
This was easily the best ad of the Super Bowl hands down. It was exciting to see Google’s first Super Bowl advertisement ever (and first TV ad period I think…though there may have been the odd commercial early on). Apparently “Parisian Love” as it’s called was available for viewing well before tonight as part of Google’s Search Stories. Anyway I found it refreshing and clever; a nice change from the rest of the nonsense.
On average I was very disappointed with the quality and originality of the ads. I was surprised how many concepts seemed to double up (not only that, but also play consecutively). Tackling was a surprisingly frequent punch line. Yawn. I think Super Bowl ads peaked sometime back in the late 90′s early 00′s. Cheers to Google for putting out something worthwhile.
In part 2 of the Vintage Ski Ads Series I chose some that focused in on the skis themselves. When I see skis these days they either look like pop culture threw up all over them or they were designed by the same guy who makes the info graphics at the bottom of the ESPN screen. Looking at the examples above it’s plain to see they had a little more appreciation for subtlety and a sense for classic design back in the day. Either that or the printing methods were such that they were limited to simple shapes and colors and the designer in me is just picking up on that.
When I think about it, this could be the case with a lot of older stuff. I think we as designers often appreciate unintended aesthetic elements; things that were a function of necessity or limitation rather than deliberate design decisions. A good example would be vintage audio equipment. I think the Neve Sidecar is one of the most beautiful inanimate objects ever created. But when you really look at it you realize it was designed by engineers; pretty much every design decision was dictated by necessity and function. So I must be reinterpreting that as physical beauty creating a connection between the idea of an object’s functionality and it’s aesthetic beauty. In other words, maybe I only like how it looks because I appreciate how it works (or in this case, sounds). Then again, I have some gear around the studio that I love the sound and functionality of but is just downright ugly to look at.
Anyways, all those Rossi’s are incredible. This whole style needs to make a comeback, but it seems these days people need to be beaten over the head with design instead of left to appreciate its finer points on their own. I’m not saying there’s not a place for busy, crazy graphics on skis — I myself have designed several busy, crazy skis — I just wish there were more like these to choose from. I guess it’s a different industry, no longer do guys in mock turtlenecks with comb-overs get all scientific and wear collared dress shirts while developing new skis in the lab, now it’s just this guy and a Nintendo DS in a dark room.
I got my first couple days of skiing for the season in last week right after some nice snow up at Heavenly. Skiing always reminds me of being really young and going up with my parents, Sacramento is only an hour from the Sierras so we’d get up a few times a year. I loved all the design associated with ski equipment and I found that when I first started out in design I was always trying to emulate that style in my work.
My latest trip got me thinking about vintage ski graphics so I set out to track down some good examples. Most of what I found were from magazine ads, this first set focuses on racing imagery. I’ll be posting some more in the days to come, hope you enjoy this first batch.
In keeping with my recent car kick I thought I’d post these vintage BMW ads. The first one — created as part of BMW’s affiliation with the 1972 Munich Olympics — is vaguely reminiscent of Otl Aicher’s posters. I’m assuming this was no accident. It’s also a big enough file that you could probably get a pretty good print out of it off a nice inkjet (click image to view full size). I really wish more vintage posters like this were available in higher resolutions. With most of this advertising stuff, the owners of the copyrights have no intention of ever printing them again, it’s a shame they can’t be reproduced and enjoyed by more people.