It’s now going on to three years since I’d begun my cannabis journey in art. Of course back then, I was looking at branding cannabis products, where weed is advertised like the vintage cigarette ads of yore and the alcohol ads of today.
The Ganja train is picking up momentum, a lot more in some countries than others but at least the people are collectively becoming more aware, so it’s just a matter of time.
At the time I took the Chesterfield cigarette brand (which I modified to Ganjafield) and one of the classic Marlboro cowboy ad posters, transcribed it to the following. The idea was in regards to this idea of the Caribbean islands being a weed tourist hub as well as a top producer in the cannabis industry.
I got my PC back from repairs yesterday (yes, finally) and I’ve got my software and tablet back up and running. I missed working with this particular medium so much, but was glad for the break whilst working on the mural.
So alas, while trying to work on a concept, I saw a picture of a bicycle on a beach looking rather curious on its own. I knew right then and there that I wanted to do something with the bike, and riding it was clearly not on the cards.
Once I was content with the bike and its positioning, I was pondered long on how or what to do next with the composition. So I went digging around on my old harddrive looking for anything that might contribute to this currently surreal scene.
I went ahead and sourced a photo of the old Marine House in Barbados’ Carlisle Bay area and happily chucked it into the background to develop the composition. All the while, still tinkering with the colour balance and hues/saturation.
This picture is strictly for reference, I am not advertising for the island of Aruba –>
I stumbled across an old ad I used to see on the tube on my commute during my years in London, it was an ad for Aruba. The ad was mostly a picture of this shapely lady with a red and white speed boat in the background. I liked her pose.
That ad actually took me back a ways, I remembered that lovely smile and the gleeful eyes, amongst other things of course. With that, I thought that I could attempt to incorporate her, or at least the vibe she brings somehow.
This is what I got so far, which you see above.. I liked it for a bit, but as one of my most recent mentors told me, don’t fall in love with one drawing, keep trying others and see what you get. While that concept wasn’t new to me, it served as a well intentioned reminder. Thus I went digging about in search for another pose that might fit the dimension.
Through my usual image searching in my many reference folders, I found an image of a tennis player leaning forward, anticipating service from her opponent. I knew right then, that it could fit the bill.
It’s at this point when I started flipping between the two variations of the same illustration that I figured I knew what I wanted to do with them. Which brings us, back to the beginning of this post.. Ganja Cigarette Advertising!
So at the time in writing, I’ve been working on the illustration’s composition and revisiting the brand’s packaging design. Not exactly sure what’s going on in the clothing department as yet. What I do know is that, the ladies will be wearing completely different attire from one another, in both colour and style.
Interestingly enough actually, while I was harvesting images on Google this morning – searching for cigarette ads – in the dozens of vintage and retro ads I sifted through, I found this ad for Capri SuperSlims. A brand I never heard or seen before today. Okay, I presumably saw it before as I’ve milled through cigarette ads on several occasions over the past three or four years.
I don’t think a sexist spin on ganja advertising would be all that appealing or positive. I do however, really dig the silhouette, that pose in the print advertisement. Not far off from the one I figured into second version.
I’m not sure if I find the ad all that offensive, personally.
That is, not more so than your usual, “sex sells” brand of advertising.
I’m not saying it has to be all wholesome and rated G but at the end of the day, I would find myself chasing a more chill and fun vibe, than that of a pervy/lecherous one.
I shall resume working on these illustrations.
Here’s to a tasteful conclusion.