Automotive Illustration – The Art of the Automobile

I’m happy to present this post of automotive illustration, as it covers a lot of ground regarding my Illustrations, from distant past to recent times. The focus here is the Art of the Automobile. (Trucks, too!) Where to begin?…

Automotive Art - Tony's Truck Thumbnail

Mercedes Automotive Illustration

Several years ago, I landed an assignment producing illustrations for Mercedes-Benz. The ad campaign was designed for newspapers nationwide. I produced a number of drawings for their S-series of automobiles. Here are three images from the ad…

Mercedes | Automotive Drwing


Automotive Illustrations | Mercedes Headlights

Truck Illustrations

I did promise some trucks! Here is an illustration from the pages of The Wall Street Journal that I produced when I was young, and a staff illustrator at the WSJ, in the 1980’s…


I was crafting the graphic identity of the paper in this period, and would relish the chance to portray the occasional ‘non-suit’-type for the A-Hed, (center column) usually a human interest story. Here was a profile of a woman 18-wheel driver… somewhat novel at the time.

Staying with trucks, I worked on a calendar project for the specialty-foods company Tony’s, on the west coast. Here is a spot of one of the company vehicles:

Tony's Foods Truck Illustration

I landed a major job for Brown-Forman, the distillers of Old Forester Bourbon. I will only share one image of very many here. It was created for an in-house training program…

Old Truck | Transportation Illustration This truck and its driver would drive (in their presentation, a parallax animation) through fields of grain, into the distillery, pick up barrels, etc, etc. It was a fun project.

Henry Ford Portrait

Ok, Back to cars…  I mentioned that I was pioneering a style at The Wall Street Journal, way back in the last century! Here is a special ’sneak peek’ at the birth of this iconic portrait style, known as the ‘hedcut’:

Automotive Illustration | Henry Ford

Henry Ford, II. I was trying to work out the best way to illustrate a person’s portrait in miniature, for the purposes of newsprint. This was a trial which did make it into print in the WSJ. This was likely 1979. Notice the elaborate pointillistic detail and rather exuberant line-work in the hair and suit areas. I had a lot of kinks to work out in the process, but it was a start. Glynn Mapes, the front page editor, was satisfied with it.

Special Automobile Illustration

Lastly, I present my ‘gift portrait’ for a barrister friend in Ireland. He came into possession of this 1938 beauty a little while ago. I even got a ride in it on one of my many jaunts to the Emerald Isle! It really is a stunning period vehicle.

Alvis |Classic Automotive Illustration

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