Tuesday, May 31, 2022

They Be Dragons... Forever

One evening I was contacted with the seemingly odd request to see if I could whip up a design for the cover of the Sammo Hung/Jackie Chan/Yuen Biao classic DRAGONS FORVER… in a couple hours. They wanted to review it THAT night. Weird, but NOT the strangest request to come across my desk, believe it or not. So I put down my fork, shoved my dinner back in the microwave and went to work mocking up a quick design.

This is what I presented. With my intention to illustrate it (or something like it) if approved. Jackie is a little blurry here as I only had some 30-year old magazines to work from.

I believe it was posted for feedback on a public forum with the general consensus being it looked like something hastily mocked up in Photoshop in a couple hours. Um. Bingo. That’s EXACTLY what it was! An initial concept, not final art.

So a request came for a second design. Posthaste. Okay. Here we go again. More red meat was thrown to the masses to stick their pitchforks into.

The next day, this potential client then asked for a mockup of THE PROTECTOR as well. I did an original, as well as a revised updated version of the Japanese poster adding in the missing Sally Yeh. (Everything goes better with Sally Yeh.)


Then a few CRIME STORY comps followed also in a hurry the following day. Not sure what the rush was. Perhaps they needed something to show someone I guess. It wasn't for me to know.

In the end that client was like, "Eh. Thanks, but nevermind."

You win some. You lose some. That's the nature of business. I've learned from 30+ years of graphic design you just do your best, but don't get too emotionally attached to this stuff. It'll break your heart.

Funnily enough, soon after, I noticed a Blu-ray distributor in Asia apparently felt quite differently regarding the artwork. And was happily using my DRAGONS FOREVER art for the slipcover on their release of the film. Would've been nice if they asked me first. But I contacted them and settled it. I told them it was only a design mockup, but apparently they are quite fond of photo collages and felt it worked for them perfectly as it was. No more work needed.

You lose some. You win some. On it goes.

Next up.... designing a flexible template for a series of martial arts classics.

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