Commercially Christmas — And An Anticipated Event: The Pacific Crab-Bash!
December usually inspired Santa on billboards, cards, and ads — and Marget Larsen produced many holiday graphic boxes and wrapping paper. The ADASF Annual Exhibition gave her the Award of Merit in 1965. (Marget also worked at 901 Battery Street during the1980s, where she designed fabrics. I was in that location in those years and I would meet Marget briefly and also see our long time friend, John Pratt who was then an assistant to Marget.)
These outdoor boards are also from 1965.
Holiday Gift Boxes. Artist, Marget Larsen. Art Directors, Marget Larsen /Robert Freeman. Copywriter, Howard Gossage. Printer, The Finn Industries. Client, Intrinsics. (Photo: CA Magazine, Marget Larsen article, March/April 1988.)
B of A —Photographer, Lee Blodget. Art Director, John McDanials. Copywriter, John McDanials. Printer, Compton & Sons. Agency, Johnson & Lewis. Client, Bank of America.
OK-Used Cars—Artist, Lowell Herrero. Art Director, Gene Duffy. Agency, Campbell-Ewald. Client, Chevrolet Used Cars.
Yellow Pages—Artist, Henry Syverson. Art Director, Robert Watkins. Copywriter, Hal Atkins. Printer, Art Craft Poster Co. Agency, BBDO. Client, Pacific Telephone.
At Vicom Associates / FCB Healthcare, I was asked to tie-in “Santa” images with a line of pharmaceutical client products. The first four examples, below, were for Syntex Laboratories Inc.: 1987, two 4½” X 6 ½” “Happy Holidays!” cards. The two larger cards (the 2nd, so large, I show only the lower quarter of it) were for the Syntex marketing department.
The 1994 newspaper full-page for Genentech, Inc. was produced in one day! Creative director, Lester Barnett, came into my room and asked me to wrap a fir tree around the already positioned type. Then off it went, out the door, and the next morning it was in the SF Chronicle on December 25, 1994.
I was also free-lancing for Pat Corman Public Relations, representing The Marketplace; Santa was requested for their retail ads.
San Francisco suppliers: typography, paper, and printing companies in those days were so very generous with gifts to those who designed with these suppliers in mind. Pacific Lithograph Inc. was one of the favorite printing houses in San Francisco.
Doug Ballinger, Ed Roualdes and Dick Vrooman — were friends, and after working with them throughout the year — all was celebrated in December with the crab-feed that topped the “be there” list. The printed invites to this annual event were anticipated and word spread fast of the date when the very best marinated crab was served with garlic French bread and with bottles of wine to pick up for your table.
I don’t remember Pacific Litho’s location; I seem to remember it on Vermont Street. There were places to park, then. After passing through the front door, the din of many voices and the whiffs of the huge amount of crab — pulled you into the huge pressroom. The crowd seemed to be the whole of the advertising community and the whole Pacific Litho crew. I remember talking with the pressmen, who were always so busy when we’d be there at a press check.
Here, above, is the iron-on invitation created one year by Lowell Herrero. In April 1976, I had moved my free-lancing to the pharmaceutical agency, Barnum Communications. In December, word in town was that year’s Crab-Bash invites had been sent — but nothing arrived for me. Rex Simmons, at my previous location, created this mock-up that got me in the door.