Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dead DJs

Last month I was asked to illustrate a promo poster for an event at a particular nightclub in New York. They were pretty clear on what they wanted ... the DJs being featured at the event drawn as superheroes.

I was also asked to find a way to incorporate each DJ's particular signature brand, company logo, or prop into the costume designs. Each DJ needed relatively equal treatment in the poster, save for one, who owns the club in question. And, of course, likenesses were important. Oh yeah ... try to get the nightclub logo in there too.

They called me on a Friday ... and needed the full-colour final for Tuesday. But we worked out a reasonable fee, so the work began.

I thought the sketches turned out pretty well - I put a lot of work into designing distinct characters based on the DJ's, incorporated a lot of stuff they wanted, and they layouts were pretty cool. Those are some tiny heads to capture a likeness on, but I was going to worry about that more in the final when I'd be working at a larger size.

The art director liked them, but it turned out there was someone else I needed to impress. The DJs' representatives rejected it, and they scrapped the idea entirely. Now, illustrations get killed - no biggie, it just happens sometimes. Could the folks at the club have checked with the artists' reps before asking me to do something so specific? Maybe ... but you live and learn, and next time I'll know to ask.

In the meantime, this is the only forum in which the sketches will ever be seen (a little too specific to use for another illo) ... and it was too much work over too short a period of time to let them just sit on my hard drive.

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