Thursday, April 22, 2010

Greeting Card Designs - 1991
An EARTH DAY Special

Changing direction today, I thought it more than appropriate to showcase some old greeting card designs that I created way back in 1991. These were for my own line of cards, which I had every hope and intention of having printed on recycled paper.

So intent with what I hoped to be a "simple" pro-Earth business plan that I made the logo to feature a very basic depiction of one of the characters, standing on a globe and "hugging" a tree.

The line of cards was dubbed:
since all the characters had "balloon-heads".

These illustrations (as I'll show below) were first created back in 1991, yet I feel completely assured that they are still more than viable today - nearly 20 years later.

Certainly, while I'd like to rework newer versions of them, if only because my abilities have increased, I don't feel that they really "need" to be (outside of my own neurotic "perfectionist" tendencies since I see places where improvements could be made).

I worked these up in two different styles.
The first, being a fun, friendly style - similar to one of my "children's book" styles - with short, stout, bouncy, full figures and bright colors.
The second, like the logo for the line is very basic - little more than simple blocky stick figures with little, if any color.

All of these pieces are drawn on bristol finish illustration board, first in pencil, then watercolored and finally with pencil again over the watercolors to ensure the line-work isn't washed out.

Many of these card designs are fairly self-explanatory, but the inside message for each is included.


"Please Write"


"Thinking of You"


"Bon Voyage"


"Get Well Soon"



" I Love You"

"I love You, Mom. Happy Mother's Day"

"Many Blessings to You and Your Little One."

"Happy Birthday!"
Birthday Card
Exterior (above) and Interior (below)
*click to enlarge*

And, lastly... the design that got me started with the line... and one of the reasons I am posting these today: EARTH DAY!

"Help Support Our World"


I had, back in the early 1990's, sent these samples to many greeting card companies, (starting with those who printed on recycled paper,) but one after another, rejection letters arrived - a few actually stating that they found the style of subject matter: "headless" figures, to be... "disturbing".

Unfortunately, no one "got" the concept. These weren't headless figures. Their heads were balloons. And as such, could have a unique method of expression.

I had many more ideas for this line, but it came to a halt when it became obvious that this was just too "out there" for some.

Oddly enough, a few years after my ideas were shot down, I would then see other types of "balloon head" characters (mostly in advertising : some cold or alergy medicine commercial that stated it didn't give a "swollen head" feeling -which would show the person's head expanding like a balloon - and "AirHeads" candy that, when eaten by kids, caused their heads to expand like balloons and shoot off into the stratosphere, causing damage to anything in their way).

I know that certainly, more "disturbing" characters than these have been created and successfully marketed in the years since.
It's not the first time that I (or any artist) was simply "ahead of my time", with my...

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