Roma Wines & Chevron Campaigns
In April of this year, this painting became a search, as to who was the artist ? I sent the challenge out to everyone on our Geezer mailing list.
On Mon, 4/18/16, I wrote :
Subject : A follow-up for those interested, it took less than a day to discover the artist of the mysterious Roma Estate Wine painting, There were several responses, (Thank you : Kirsten Nusser, Chuck Pyle, Robert Steel, Norm Nicholson and Dick Cole.)
Photo of Roma painting at The Buckeye in Tam Valley
The answer, must be this, from John Crawford—Clark Agnew ! There were similar Roma Wine illustrations on the web, but none that listed the artist’s name. It took John with his ability to identify style with the artist’s name.
Clark Agnew did do other illustrations for Roma Estate Wines and other advertisements that have a similar look. I never knew the story of “the world’s largest winery.”
This was an adventure and an education for a Sunday afternoon—thanks to Jerry Gibbons and his questioning friend, Anna Lindgren (who used to work at BSSP). Greg Stern (Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners) joined in the search.
Larry Nielsen thought to visit The Buckeye Roadhouse on Shoreline Highway in Mill Valley—to see the painting first-hand. Jerry Gibbons wrote : “I’ll invite John Crawford and Greg Stern to join me at The Buckeye.”
4-18-16 This, additional story, from John Crawford :
While I was prowling around the internet looking to uncover the illustrator responsible for The Buckeye’s Roma Wine illustration, it occurred to me that I had a couple of gouache illustrations for Chevron hanging downstairs, and that I’d never taken the trouble to find out who did them. These are literally “found art.” When I was working at BBD&O in the early 70’s, I parked my car out on Sacramento Street one evening and ran in to get something. When I came out, I saw a trash barrel full of old artwork – BBD&O had obviously been cleaning out their art files. I grabbed a couple of colorful pieces off the top of the pile and put them in the back of the car. They were illustrations from the infamous “Chevron Island” campaign. They feature Irene Tsu as a Hawaiian hula girl on behalf of Chevron aviation fuel. In one, she is tugging on the propeller of a piper cub, which seems like a ploy to display her cleavage. In the second, she is gesturing at the gas pump while another Piper buzzes the field. As I said, the campaign was infamous.
There had been a writer at BBDO, Bill Dombrowski, who worked on this campaign and who later ended up at Y&R in New York, where they had an annual competition for “Worst Ad I Ever Did.” Every year, Bill would enter the Chevron Island campaign and every year it would win. A lot of this could be explained by the fact that Herb Hammerman, the notorious Director of Marketing at Chevron, had a fixation on Irene Tsu, which resulted in her being featured in a lot of unlikely scenarios involving tires, tiki gods, etc. (I don’t mean to imply anything other than an innocent infatuation – Irene Tsu was, for several years, the live-in girlfriend of Frank Sinatra and would have had little time for Herb Hammerman.)
(BTW—Wikipedia : Irene met Frank in Florida while she was filming “Chevron Island” and he was filming “Tony Rome.”) 1968-1969.
The late Floyd Yost used to tell a story about being assigned to create an outdoor board featuring Irene Tsu dancing the hula on top of the Chevron gas pumps. Floyd attempted to explain the compositional challenges involved : gas pumps = strong vertical element ; Irene Tsu dancing atop gas pumps = very strong vertical element ; outdoor board = strong horizontal element. This seemed to be lost on Hammerman. Floyd was bundled into a cab with Bob Hilton, the managing director of BBD&O, and Hammerman to view the premiere of the outdoor board on Van Ness Avenue. Hammerman was irate : “I can’t see Miss Irene’s face ! It’s too small!” Floyd again attempted to explain the compositional difficulties, whereupon Hammerman said, “Well, make her HEAD bigger!!” Floyd said, “Herb, you could have been Walt Disney.” Hammerman : “What?” Floyd : “That was Disney’s big innovation – he made the heads bigger.” The cab drove off, leaving Floyd on Van Ness Avenue, and when he got back to BBD&O, he was no longer employed there.
Outdoor board—Irene on top of gas pump by Charlie Allen
As a surprise birthday present many years ago, my wife had the Chevron illustrations framed for me. In the process, the tissue overlays had been discarded. This compromised their historical value, since the tissues had original Hammerman client notations. (e.g. “more sparkles on teeth!” “fix hair!”) Anyway, I have found that these illustrations were the work of Charlie Allen, one of the great Patterson & Hall illustrators, who passed away in 2011. I’m sure many of you will recall him. He was a much more gifted artist than Clark Agnew, who did very well on the east coast, but could never have gotten in the door at Patterson & Hall. I should have dug a little deeper into that BBD&O trash. There was a lot of discarded genius in there.
This is the final ad for the art above
I enjoyed the recent stories on ROMA and Chevron. Here’s another from the P&H archives. I remember chatting with Charlie about these ads. He thought it was a silly concept, but was glad for the work. And, boy could he paint a pretty girl.
Another piece from the campaign
I’ve found a few examples of ROMA in our archives. It looks like they did more or the product illustrations of bottles and glasses, but I did find a Bruce Bomberger B&W ad.
For Love And Money
Our previous collection presented posters that were done with “Love”, for no pay. Now I show this collection done for various reasons—and, for money. Assignments had challenges, sometimes very difficult, but I don’t remember any illustrator or graphic designer who didn’t love creative work. There were always many commercial needs for posters—as large as outdoor boards and some even small in size, which had messages worthy to be tacked up on a wall.
The creative talents in the San Francisco Bay Area were well known. The “Rock Posters” identified a new culture in the area. The culture was shown in the “costume” of the day. Levi’s men’s wear changed dramatically. Chris Blum, at Honig-Cooper & Harrington created over 75 Levi’s posters for Levi Strauss & Co from 1967 to 1984, hiring a number of local artists.
1970s, “3 Legged Levi’s,” Artist : Victor Moscoso, Lettering : Tony Naganuma
1971, “Cowboy,” Artist : Charles White III, Lettering : Tony Naganuma
1971, “18 Wheeler Truck,” Artist : Michael Schwab
1974, “Levi’s Shadow,” Artist : Bruce Wolfe
1980, “1980 Olympics-Cycling,” Artist : Nicolas Sidjakov
My introduction to poster design :
1-In 1967, as I was still in the Belli Building, this California University Class Reunion poster was assigned to me through ADS Advertising. Apparently someone from the “Class of ‘42” knew someone in the agency and the assignment came to my free-lance studio. The most difficult part of the job was spacing and cementing the individual alumni names framing the artwork.
2-1969-This, small and inexpensive flyer/poster was for the night classes that were offered at the deYoung Museum. I was then free-lancing at 680 Beach Street and I would drive to the museum at night and “throw pots on the wheel”!
3-In 1970, A.Carlisle & Co. asked me to create two layouts for Levi’s. This tied into fashion change at that time. One design was to be chosen for a poster and sales folder. I was hired often to create layouts when several printing houses and art studios were competing with each other.
4- From September 1975 to September 1978, I worked for the San Francisco Ballet.
I learned a lot about this ballet company in those years because I was involved with posters, brochures, direct mail pieces and newspaper ads. By just changing the colors and the type, this Winter/Spring Season poster adapted well for the additional poster for the special guest performances of Valery & Galina Panov.
5- In May of 1979, Ayer /Pritikin & Gibbons asked me to create a simple B&W line illustration of Maiden Lane (their location) to be used on the cover of folders for internal use in that agency. On each of the printed folders, I was instructed to hand-paint only the area of their sign—as I show here (I don’t remember, now, the actual colors). Weeks after I was paid, I stopped by the agency and found that the art had been enlarged—larger than a poster— to the height of their wall in their receptions area !
6- Again I was hired only for a layout, its purpose was to get approval for the elements of a proposed design. For the 1979 poster for the San Francisco Opera, La Gioconda (previously assigned to Bruce Wolfe) I was instructed by Catherine Flanders, at D’Arcy-MacManus & Masius, to create a layout of a carved, stone (marble?) lion with the scene of a “ship on fire” in its mouth. The type was already styled. The SF Opera approved this layout and then Bruce Wolfe created the finished art.
7- Since the early ‘70s, I worked often with “medical agencies” such as Vicom Associates. In 1982 at 901 Battery Street, I was asked to imitate George Montgomery Flagg’s image for their client, IVAC.
8- In 1985, again with Vicom & Associates, I had the chance to create the layout and the finished art for a poster for Cutter Biomedical. Previous to the accepted layout, I presented 30 “thumbnail” sketches at 4”x 5”, as possibilities.
9- Skate America International ’91 The full color art for this poster and B&W version for newspaper ads were for art director, Gail Perry Johnson,
The following is a collection of posters by various artists working in the San Francisco Bay Area.
A- Pacific Northwest, United Airlines, Artist : Stan Galli, Art Director : Eugene Raven, 1958
B- Shipstad & Johnson Ice Follies, Artist : Larry Green. I remember this poster in color, but I could only find this, as shown in the 1964 ADASF Annual Show publication. This poster was a big departure from the usual “ice follies” traditional style. This was art directed by Jack Keeler at Campbell-Ewald, 1964
C- Moby Grape /Jack the Ripper /Big Brother & The Holding Co., Artist : John Lichtenwalner, 1967
D- “The Silent Majority”, Artist : Primo Angeli, 1969
E- Cliff House, Artist : Stephen Haines Hall
F- SF Jazz Festival, Presented by American Airlines, Artist : Ward Schumacher, 1994
San Francisco’s Art Clubs 1958 – 1984
In 1958, the 10TH Annual Exhibition of San Francisco Advertising Art was a partnership of The Art Directors Club and the Society of Designers & Illustrators. In 1962, the San Francisco Society of Illustrators was founded. Some time before 1964, the San Francisco Art Directors And Artists Club was established. Then Bill Hyde designed the new logo and it became, in 1965, the Art Directors And Artists Club Of San Francisco.
In 1971, after copywriters and other graphic talent joined the club, the title became the San Francisco Society of Communicating Arts. In 1984, SFADC, the San Francisco Art Directors Club was located at Fort Mason.
Members Contribute Their Talents
Contributing to the success of these clubs, were the many members who offered their expertise, time and energy.
The 1967 ADASF Exhibition Annual (6”x 6”)
These photos (credit for photos is unavailable) show just some of those who contributed their assistance for the success of the 1967 event. (Adele Smith was paid, but she contributed much, much, more than her job description.)
Posters And Mailers
For annual exhibitions, special events and membership drives — various members created the design for each promotion and enlisted the generous help from copywriters, typographers and lithographers. Here are just a few as examples.
1 1966 ADASF “CALL FOR ENTRIES” for the 17th Exhibition
Created by : Chris Blum, Typography : Timely Typography, Lithography : Gordon Dettner Printers
2 1967 ADASF “LUV-IN” Surprise Party for the club’s secretary, Adele Smith
Created by : Bill Hyde, Copy by : Alice Harth /Harriet Hunter, Typography : Reardon & Krebs, Lithography : NAVH San Francisco Printers
3 1967 ADASF “A NOBLE ‘GESTURE’” Membership Offer
Created by : Ann Thompson, Typography : Reardon & Krebs Lithography : Dobson, Inc.
4 1968 ADASF “eureka ! a miniature gold rush!”
Created by : Gerald Melcher, Typography : Headliners & Falk Typography, Lithography : Pacific Lithograph, Co.
5 1968 “ADASF WELCOMES COPYWRITERS”
Created by : Mike Bull, (No other credits available)
6 1968 “ADASF MEMBERSHIP OFFER”
Created by : Ann Thompson, Copywriter : Larry McDermott, Typography : Rapid Typographers,
Lithography : Leisenring Printing
7 1969 ADASF & SF WRITERS CLUB “The 1969 Communications Fair”, twelve page brochure
Created by : Jerry Huff (show chairman), Five full page illustrations : Ed Taber, Typography : Reprotype Studio, Lithography : Peter Wells Press
8 1970 SAN FRANCISCO AD CLUB Request for avant-garde submissions
Created by : Primo Angeli (Included in a collection of “Images Of An Era : The American Poster” sponsored by Smithsonian Institution, 1976)
9 1969 ADASF “GENISIS 1” FILM EVOLUTION (An Exciting Collection of Student Films)
Created by Mike Bull, (No other credits listed)
10 1984 SFADC “GREAT IDEAS THAT DIDN’T FLY”- COMP SHOW, Call for Entries
Created by : A.D. Perry Gorchov, Design & Illustration & Hand-lettering : Dugald Stermer, Co-Design : Ron Chan, Lithography : Cannon Press /Charles Douglas Litho
I had reason, one day, to deliver a package to 40 Gold Street—just one block north and one-half block east of my location—to three very talented artists there : Ed Diffenderfer, John Lichtenwalner and Stan Dann. They had the name, “222 Group”. Now I see that they had moved from 222 Kearny Street. Ed says that addressing mail and answering the phone with their three names was difficult—and “222 Group” was already established.
Here is Ed’s story :
San Francisco Illustration & Illustrators : 1950’S Thru 1960’S
By Ed Diffenderfer
Background : In the 1940’s and 50’s the illustrator who most influenced the “West Coast” style was Fred Ludekens, who surely was influenced by painter Maynard Dixon. Fred was, in turn, a great influence on S.F. illustrators like Stan Galli and Bruce Bomberger. In the late 40’s, Bomberger worked for a time under Ludekens when Fred was head art director for Foote Cone and Belding in S.F.
In 1950 I started directly out of art school, California College of Arts & Crafts, Oakland, to work for Logan & Cox Art Studio. Maurice Logan and Willard Cox ran the studio, and at that time they employed Larry Rehag, Jack Dumas, Paul Carey, and later Joe Cleary. Maurice Logan was the premier full-color illustrator on the West Coast of the 1920’s and 30’s, and he and Paul Carey were mentors to me. I learned more in two years there than I did in four years at art school.
Editorial Art for Standard Oil which was chosen for the sixteenth annual exhibition of the Art Directors and Artists Club of San Francisco 1965.
(The illustrations shown here, are from the in black and white publication of that show.)
Artist : Ed Diffenderfer
ArtDirectors : Robert Washbish /C.R. Lyman
Client : Standard Oil Co. of California
In the 50’s almost all advertising was artwork, as color photography reproduction was not that effective then. Most illustration was done for advertising agencies or directly with companies headquartered in S.F.: Standard Oil of California (later Chevron) Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Hewlett Packard, to name a few. There were 4 major art studio services in San Francisco at the time : Logan & Cox ; Staniford Sanvick ; Patterson & Hall ; and Shawl, Nyeland & Seavey.
I was with Logan & Cox (later Logan & Carey) for 11 years. In 1956 I got my first national full color magazine series for Georgia Pacific Lumber, running in Time, Newsweek, and Fortune. I split the series of 12 with Jim Hanson, an outstanding freelance illustrator at that time.
Around 1960 an illustrator by the name of Bill Shields came to S.F. from Texas and looked me up. His work made a big impression on all of us. Before, the “San Francisco Style” of illustration had not changed too much in 15 years, but Bill’s style was very free and dramatic, easy to spot. He loosened us all up, especially our editorial pieces for annual reports and company publications.
This Bill Moyers illustration was done for Chevron World Magazine ; it also ran in PBS magazine on Creativity with Bill Moyers Series/sponsored by Chevron.
I went out on my own, freelancing, in 1962, and joined illustrators John Lichtenwalner and Stan Dann in a space on 222 Kearney Street. Later, we moved to 40 Gold Street. We were able to work together on annual reports, etc. In the 1950’s and 1960’s annual reports had copious amounts of artwork, as opposed to today. As a freelancer I was now able to go to New York and pick up magazine assignments for Argosy, Reader’s Digest, Boy’s Life, etc. About that time I was assigned by Sears Roebuck in Chicago to do 25 portraits of famous sports stars. These included Ted Williams, Sir Edmund Hillary, Bob Mathias, and many others, and were used by Sears to promote sports equipment.
The 60’s were very busy for illustrators. I even did a 50- foot mural for Barclay’s Bank in S.F. Most of us were working in downtown studios, and walking on the streets we always saw artist friends and agency people. Now almost all have gone to home studios, just as the New York illustrators all went to home studios in Connecticut.
Celebration of SFSI Alumni on May 20, 2001.
Around 1960 a small group of us formed the San Francisco Society of Illustrators. Our first show was in a restaurant called Pucci’s Pub, but we grew in membership and began to show once a year in the Zellerbach Building on Bush & Market. The large windowed lobby was a very good space, very accessible to the public.
Our Society was approved by the U.S. Air Force for their art program around 1961. Don Davey and I were the first to be sent, and in 1961 we went to Japan. In 1969 Lowell Herrero and I went to illustrate the blast-off of Apollo 9 at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The Air Force art program had traveling shows throughout the U.S., and one of these shows came to San Francisco and was to be hung in the Zellerbach Bldg. lobby. I got on the phone and was able to get the Air Force Band from Travis Air Base to come and play at the opening. It made a big impression and drew a huge crowd.
Teddy Roosevelt was done for S.F. Illustrators Annual show at Zellerbach Building. Topic was ‘Americana’.
Classic Cord car was in the Los Angeles Society of Illustrators Show.
The 50’s and 60’s were wonderful creative times for illustration, and this continued through the 70’s and 80’s for me. The demise of a lot of the magazines that used so much illustration changed things quite a bit, but many of us found other avenues for our art.
More Eating and Drinking Memories
Enricos – Watched one waiter fondle another waiter over by the cash register. Quite the show.
Julius Castle – Celebrated winning the HP account here while at Dancer.
Bottom of the Mark – (later called Mildred Pierce, site of current Fog City Diner) I watched the owner/chef carve into his hand as well as the roast beef without noticing. Yes, blood in your sandwich.
Swiss Louis – where my sometimes-partner AD Jack Jannes held court from noon to 5pm almost daily. Seldom saw him in the afternoon at the Dancer office.
Mission Rock Resort – I went there with AD Mick Kitagawa, saw a big biker guy clad in old school biker leathers enjoying lunch outside with his friend, a little person dressed in exactly the same style. Wish I had taken a photo.
Molinari’s – I used to get a sandwich there, then hike uphill on Telegraph hill, sit down somewhere and look for headlines.
Graf Zeppelin – (later Goodby turned it into their offices) After work at DFS I would go there, get half drunk, then go to karate practice.
Grumpy’s – (I think it was called something else back in the day) Went there at night with Kitagawa, the bartender had to leave so of course Mick got behind the bar and worked the rest of the night, never putting a dime in the cash register, it all went into the tip jar.
Grumpy’s or whatever it was called – I would go there with Kitagawa at noon, we’d have a drink, then Mick’s friend huge Chuck the Truck Driver would start buying us drinks. I looked at 3 drinks backed up in front of me and Mick said very seriously, ”Chuck doesn’t like it when you don’t drink his drinks.” I drank.
Kitagawa’s old Mercedes sedan parked near the Dancer office was occasionally used by local dock workers for a place to sit at lunch and listen to his radio.
Crystal Palace – an early “natural food” place on Broadway. ECD at Dancer Don Carleson would drink some kind of fancy drink with Framboise and vermouth and eat fruit salads or something. Great place.
Redwood Room – I went there with the Foremost client, Fred Fornia, and a Dancer Fitzgerald AE named Dick Somers. Redwood refused to seat us because my hair “touched” the edge of my collar. Long haired hippy freak.
Wash Bag – ACD at FCB David Hunter took me to lunch there to offer me a job at FCB to work on the Levi’s account. The salary offered was $36,000!! I took the job.
Pier 23 – AD Arthur Vibert (of Max Headroom fame) and I went here to think up a replacement for Mike Koelker’s very successful Levi’s 501 Blues. We came up with “Wear them as long as you can”, David Fincher shot maybe six or eight spots with us, but they never ran. Testing killed them, although everyone saw them on Fincher’s Propaganda reel. Someone called them the most famous spots that never ran.
…uhhh…uhhh…Price???…uhhh Tim…oh yeah..Tim Price. Now I remember some young kid who was just hired as a Copywriter.. We called him “RUBE” cause he looked like he just rolled in from some Farm ! We took him out to lunch (ha-ha) – Remember that, Tim !
My God Ann, you remember all the restaurants I choose to forget.
Little Joe’s– was on Broadway across the street from Enrico’s a few doors up towards Columbus. I think 523 Broadway. Jerry Leonhart and I used to go there for the calamari sauté with penne pasta – always cooked to perfection. It was served on an oval plate piled high. If you were smart and a calamari lover, you’d order the dish with the penne on the side ; that way you’d get the same sized plate piled just as high with calamari and an extra plate of penne also piled as high.
Sorento’s- pizza Columbus and Broadway. The topless bars opened up in their location. I have a story to tell you about one of these places, just not in writing.
Enrico’s- great place to meet friends and watch the world go by. And did you know, Enrico, for all his Bohemian persona, came from Buttonwillow, a Central Valley wide spot in the road.
Bardelli’s- All of us at Joseph Magnin would go To Bardelli’s on O’Farrell St. on Friday. I did not see Bardelli’s on your list. We then had to get back to JM to get the ads out for the following week. It was crazy sometimes, but fun !
Diana Robinson Creber
The Washington Square Bar & Grill- My go to favorite was the WashBag Good food, great bar. Art directors always had their preferences, Johns Grill, Dago Mary’s, The Clam House.
Café Trieste- After I sold my house in Millbrae and moved in to the city I spent more times going out to eat, as I lived in North Beach, freelancing.?There were a lot of good places like, Vanessi’s, Enrico’s, The Washington Bar & Grill, Spaghetti Factory and specially Cafe Trieste where I and David Grove used to have a coffee and talk. Nice memories !
Scoma’s -Location previously (1962) was a coffee shop where the founder of the Academy of Art, “Pappy” Stevens, would hold court with his “on-location” drawing class.
Gold Street– (1960s-) New Years Party every night.
Schroeder’s- In the 1960s, it was a “men only” restaurant. I was allowed as a lunch guest of Butte, Herrero & Hyde.
La Pantera Café– In 1959 w/Beatniks on upper Grant Ave., owner Rena Nicoli didn’t allow women in if wearing Capri pants. She finally let me slip quickly to a table.
Charles’ Bistrot-(1964) Drink : La Guillotine, Menu : Mtn. Oysters. Charles le Bugle ran for mayor of San Francisco, protesting the Vietnam War.
Hoffman’s Grill- In the ‘60s, women were not allowed to stand with the men at the bar along the west wall. Women were told to order a beverage only while sitting at a table in the dining area.
The Hippo and Dante Bennedetti’s New Pisa (1960s-) were decorated by Wolo, (Baron Wolff Erhardt Anton George Trutzschler von Falkenstein).
The North Star Café- (1960s) Also, men only, but I got in ! At the bar, they served drinks from a small white enamel bedpan—diners were to wear toilet seat protector when ordering cioppino ! One more thing, when a man entered the men’s room (opposite the bar) the bartender would quickly follow him in and immediately emerge wearing a gas mask !
The Sails– had a very large aquarium with a variety of large fish. Often there were only a few—we were told they would eat each other.
Original Joe’s Two with the same name, explained ? 144 Taylor Street—carries the history of Louis Rocca and Tony Rodin who opened the “original” in 1937—closed as a result of a fire in 2007. And the other, also called “Original Joe’s” on Chestnut Street was also from the 1930s. It also closed. Now the only “original” is at 601 Union Street (replacing Fior D’Italia 1886—the oldest Italian restaurant in the USA. It had a fire in 2005. Joe DiMaggio’s Italian Chophouse moved in that location but closed in 2010. Fior D’Italia is now in the San Remo Hotel.
There are photos of many of these locations on the web, now there are these, below, from McGovern’s (which was never listed in a directory nor did the owner want it to be). The clientele was longshoremen and all others. The bar and tables were in one open room. Once when the trap door to the storage in the basement was left open with no chairs blocking the hole—someone fell in—and felt no pain ! After some years, Grumpy’s (know as a “fern-bar”) opened at this same location. No more longshoremen.
Before smart phones, who had a camera to record a favorite hangout ? I did. By 1980, I was located at 901 Battery Street and McGovern’s was just a half block away—on Vallejo Street). These photos are blurry (hand-held, no flash).