“I got these from a house cleaning at [Marv Newland’s] International Rocketship. They are layout ideas for the early animated MTV logos back when MTV actually showed music videos all day. I don’t know if these were ever actually animated & aired, but they are cool nonetheless!”
I think a lot of these MTV logos were comped for commercial bumpers for an TV advertising Fred/Alan did in 1989.
“TV or MTV?”
I’ll look around for some of the spots.0 comments Tagged: 1989, MTV logo, advertising, commercials, television, MTV, graphic design, illustration,.
From the moment Fred/Alan started doing MTV’s advertising in 1988 we’d wanted to create a print campaign that would capture the feeling of change and surprise we’d been able to inject into the on-air identity from the first seconds of the channel.
Finally, in 1990 our clients agreed to a consumer advertising in Rolling Stone magazine, which eventually would run across two years. Their (then) large scale format was perfect and we were able to commission some amazing artists to participate; to contrast our photographic music trade campaign (and emphasize our identity roots), illustration was the primary medium. Our excellent art director Tom Godici picked all the art* (with some kibbitzing from the sidelines) from both sides of the generational divide, with a mix of household names, ad biz faves, and soon-to-be’s.
Our favorite story from this campaign involved Robert Crumb. Generally, Tom would contact the artists personally, tell them something about the campaign, and emphasize we’d want their take on our headline “Just when you think you know what it is… it’s MTV.” Our only request —it was optional, and most didn’t— was that the MTV logo would be included. Crumb’s representative told us to send over some of the other artists’ work and that he’d send it over to Crumb in France, but that it was extremely unlikely he’d participate. Tom dutifully packed up the stuff with a personal letter telling Crumb we knew he hated contemporary music but we loved his work.
Months later the package was mailed back, seemingly unopened. Sure enough, the original contents spilled out, to all appearances, unread. But Tom’s eyed popped when along with all the other stuff flies out an old, yellow edged piece of onion skin typing paper with a Crumb drawing (the one up above) and a note.
“Please forward the $300. My wife is spending money faster than I can earn it.”
* By R. Crumb, Lou Brooks, Janet Woolley, Robin Nedboy & Al Harp, Marvin Mattleson, Gene Greif, Jenny Holzer, Alex Grey, Robert Yarber, Fred Schneider, Mary Ellen Mark, Bill Sienkiewicz, and Lisa Powers.0 comments Tagged: MTV, 1990, 1991, Rolling Stone, advertising, print, illustration, graphic design, photography, consumer,.
Circa 19910 comments Tagged: MTV, print advertising, advertising, print, illustration, 1991,.
The cool thing about advertising is you get to do a lot of different kinds of work. The drag is that it’s the clients’ work and the agency, in the end, has to do what it’s told. So, when there’s a chance to do stuff with yourself as the client it’s a lot of fun.
We were moving to our third office in a decade (by this point “we” was Fred/Alan the ad agency and Chauncey Street the TV production company), down in the East Village, so we used it as an excuse to have a hoot. Art director Tom Godici contacted some artists we’d worked with (like Joey Ahlbum) and some we were looking forward to meeting (like Leslie Cabarga). Alan and creative director Bill Burnett wrote some amusing copy about some classic New York landmarks off the tourist paths, we printed a postcard folder, and our moving announcement was complete. On the first day in the new office we had an art show of the original illustrations (we had space for a small, private art gallery, where we were to have shows every month), and a good time was had by all.0 comments Tagged: self promotion, postcards, moving, announcements, illustration, print,.
We started having Christmas parties in 1985 because it was so damn hard to figure out which clients and hope-to-be-clients to give presents to, and exactly what to give them. We figured it would probably cost us the same to party and everyone would be happier anyhow. The first year we rented out the Museum of Radio & Television; everyone thought we were classy. Then a roller disco; they thought we were fun.
By ‘87 Fred/Alan had morphed into a bona fide advertising agency and we were so horrified at the thought a great party was in order. Luckily, Ed Levine and Noel Frankel had joined our ranks. Ed had recently produced one of the best Dr. John records ever and thought he could talk the good Doctor into our budget on an off night for the band. Noel, a brilliant art director, knew about our soul music obsession and one day in a planning meeting did the invitation illustration completely with a Wite Out brush tip!
We rented out a belly dancing joint on 8th Avenue, put out some checkered tableclothes, catered soul food from Sylvia’s, and Fred/Alan raised the roof on the greatest R&B club north of the Mason-Dixon. From then on our parties were legendary.
Fred/Alan Rhythm & Blues Christmas Party
Live music by Dr. John
Soul food from Sylvia’s
Featuring: “WE’LL HAVE A BLUE, BLUE CHIRSTMAS WITH (OR WITHOUT) YOU”
Come with the one you turn to when you’re blue…
Monday, December 14, 1987
Illustrated & designed by Noel Frankel