early work - click on image to return
Early work

Top photo: My internship work while working at Ford design studios in Dunton, UK (1975). This was during the period studying automotive design at the Royal College of Art in London, UK (1974-76). At this time there were only five colleges worldwide that specialized in 'automotive design' (USA x2, UK x2 & Germany x1). Since then this subject has flourished to many more universities but is no longer called 'automotive design' and instead comes under 'transportation design', 'vehicle design', 'car design' or even 'intelligent mobility design'. I find that interesting as 'automotive' literally means self-motivated, which in essence could mean designing anything, whereas the new labels are more specific.

Middle photo: An early sketch from the late 60s or early 70s. Typical of my early drawing style, usually created with one black thin-line marker per drawing on cartridge paper. Cartridge paper would soak up the ink so that towards the end, as the marker ran dry, a lighter more faded effect was possible. I was inspired by the fantastic drawings in books and magazines by Ford and GM designers. I tried to emulate the shiny surfaces and reflections that gave these drawings such impact, while at the same time creating my own unique designs. Most of my designs from this period were quite extreme and of questionable aesthetics but it was also a sign of the times with American car designers creating rocket inspired shapes.

Last photo: A proposal for Daily Telegraphs' British Styling competition (1971-72). My first entry was a strange design but had been one of 22 finalist drawings, so with this second entry the following year I was quite optimistic. However this design came nowhere. Maybe it was too conventional, nevertheless looking at it now I notice that the angled instrument panel towards the driver was quite unique then and appeared first as far as I am aware in a BMW concept car (ca.1972). Whether I had seen sketches or photos of that BMW design or seen it elsewhere I can no longer recall, maybe it was just coincidence and a logical development.