Illustration | My Black Brick

My Black Brick

Keeping a '92 Volvo 240 Wagon on the Road & Other Automotive & DIY Musings

Cutaway Illustration of a 244

Cool little painting from yesteryear.


Vote for My T-Shirt

cashclunkers_van_185x185After spending the morning finalizing my design for a “Save the Clunkers” t-shirt, it turns out the C4C program will end Monday. Let’s hope the government’s servers can handle the last-minute rush from people who were on the fence about trading in their old Mercury Marauders for Honda Fits.

Please give me a vote of “6” at the 6 dollar t-shirts site. If I get enough votes you’ll be able to buy the shirt for… $6.

Vote now!


The New Avanti Estate Wagon


avanti_golfI finished rendering my Avanti Wagon and entered it into the Studebaker Design Museum show. I haven’t done much 3D before but Google SketchUp was really simple to use. It didn’t give me everything I wanted though, so I ended doing some vector drawing on top of the model to get it to look right. Not quite as cool as Top Gear’s Porsche Shooting Brake but I’m happy with how it all turned out.

I wrote some marketing copy and created two ads for the 2-door Avanti Estate. The ads were loosely based on these illustrations posted on I love the rough, vignetted edges on those marker drawings and the colorful rendering given to the backgrounds.

The ads are available as PDF files by clicking the small images, or here and here.

avanti_speedI’m ashamed to confess my previous ignorance of the Avanti’s designer, Raymond Loewy. He was THE industrial designer of the mid-20th century. In addition to designing for Studebaker, he designed buses for Greyhound, logos for Nabisco, Shell and Exxon, and even the iconic bottles that distinguished Coca-Cola from other sodas through the end of the last century. His design for the exterior of Air Force One is still in use today.

While I was working on the renderings I discovered thatAvanti Motors still exists and creates a limited run of new cars out of Mexico and Canada. I don’t think they’re planning a wagon though.

CORRECTION: A reader informed me that Avanti ceased production in 2006. An interesting note from Wikipedia:

Michael Eugene Kelly, owner of Avanti Motors Corporation, was arrested by the FBI on Dec 22, 2006 in Florida. Kelly is suspected of running a $400 million Ponzi scheme from 1992–2004 and is in jail without bail facing mail fraud charges.


Little Red Wagon

illustrations volvo 240

I love these little illustrations from the 1986 user manual. Somehow they popped up from the Volvo USA site.