Royal Mail/2012 Olympics / March 2nd, 2010
I will admit right now, this job didnâ€™t fill me with enthusiasm at first. I have worked for the Royal Mail three times previously and each time my work has not been used in favour of photography. My initial reaction was just not to do the job as itâ€™s not much fun working up and image through the rough stage and paint, only for it never to see the light of day. Thatâ€™s not a criticism of the Royal Mail, itâ€™s just the way these things go sometimes.
My inclination to do the job was not heightened when I saw the rough drawing sent to me to show what was required. A massive amount of work was going to have to be put in. A double page fold out leaflet of a locker room. Each locker representing a different sport and containing all the equipment associated with that discipline.
So what swayed me?
The whole team at GBH!
They were adamant that they wanted to use me and any objections or concerns I raised were swept away in a wave of enthusiasm.
My biggest concern was finding reference for all of the equipment needed for each sport. Each piece of equipment had to be the type used by the athletes and it would also have to be approved by several people. My concerns were calmed when a couple of days later a file was emailed over for a sport with a wealth of pre approved reference included with the promise of more to come. I agreed to work on one locker and we would see how successful we both found the process. I was surprised how well the initial test went and GBH were happy with the feel of the image (aided of course by the mass of reference). We decided to go ahead with the whole project. I couldnâ€™t resist working on something for the Olympic Games!
The rough probably took about two weeks with a surprisingly small amount of amends which was a very welcome surprise. Painting went very well. It was a long process though with each one taking 10 days each. I also had to take into account where type was to be dropped into each locker and so those areas had to be darkened, I was helped out enormously in that regard with an acetate provided by the team with all of the type in place and set, it was just a question of me having that to hand and keeping it in mind.
I was very happy with the finished artwork and sent each illustration off , there were no amendments and everyone was very happy with the work.
I must say, despite my reluctance to take this job on it has actually been one of the most enjoyable and rewarding processâ€™ I have been through as an illustrator and I must thank everyone at GBH for their diligence, enthusiasm and above all, respect for everything involved in creating an illustration.