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Parody of the BMW logo (roundel) in living technicolor!

Updated on November 10, 2011
Rat Race!  Check it out at cafe press:
Rat Race! Check it out at cafe press: | Source

Hughes Design Create

Studio life today was challenging as usual. To get the image you see to your left, I had to stumble about the web looking for a chrome pattern or brush, until it occurred to me that Photoshop might have one already installed. It does! That made the design fly by!

For the text portion I used Helvetica Bold in white. I had to manipulate each letter on an individual layer. Then I applied the chrome effect, tweaked the settings so that they looked close to what I wanted. Next I merged all the layers and applied a glass effect to it, thereby unifying all the disparate elements and softening it up a bit; finally I gave it some opacity so that the skull photograph (cropped but otherwise unretouched) could shine through.

Halloween Skull used in this parody.
Halloween Skull used in this parody. | Source


Obviously this is a parody. The supreme court has determined that parody "is the use of some elements of a prior author's composition to create a new one that, at least in part, comments on that author's works." Here we have the emblem of one of the most sought after automobiles, the BMW (Bum's Main Wish) altered to spell out the words RAT RACE. Additionally, death lurks in the middle. The automobile makers would like us to spend all our time chasing after status symbols while everyday we get closer to death. Additionally, there is the angle that the obsession we have with cars, and by default gasoline, is leading to environmental disaster; as well, some would argue, to war in the middle east.

Personal thoughts

In the early 1990's I drove a BMW. It was a car that hadn't been too well maintained and was on it's last legs. Every time I needed to give it a repair, I was astounded by the amount of money involved. Parts for the car are more expensive, and I often wondered if they were really any better than, those for say a Ford or Chevrolet. It was fun to drive, but really was just an expensive toy. I'm glad I didn't spend too many years chasing that dream!

I'll just briefly compare it to a VW diesel Rabbit I drove in the mid 1980's. That car gave me 50+ miles to the gallon on the highway; and I once drove it from Ann Arbor Michigan to Santa Cruz California for less than eighty dollars. Sure, gas was cheaper then; but it had the best gas mileage of any car I've ever driven. Repairs for it were cheaper, in large part because parts are cheaper, than for the BMW. It's a backwards kind of world where people give up their very life's blood, just so that the car they drive can cost them more in the long run.

Returning to Rat Race

The image is available on various items over at cafepress. I feel that I'm making some progress as an artist with Photoshop. One thing is that a break can help to refocus and grant new perspective while working. That's exactly when I thought that there might be a chrome tool in Photoshop; while I was taking a break.

Hope that you have enjoyed today's edition.


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