P&B Wools - Rowland Emett! Whimsy for everyone!

More great stuff from our friends across the pond today. This time, we bring you  our discovery of a new favorite illustrator in this 1947 ad for P&B wools, who, for some reason, use a beehive as their logo. Weird. Anyway....Rowland Emett!

Until a few minutes ago, I'd never heard of Rowland Emett. Thankfully, one of our cub reporters dropped this ad on my desk, exposing my foolish ignorance, humiliating me. How dare you, cub reporter! Also, nice work! I'm giving you a raise and then firing you. You can have the corner office. I'm sorry, but you'll have to clean out your desk as soon as you move in.

So who's this Rowland Emett guy? English illustrator and sculptor. 1906-1990. His dad was an amateur inventor. This makes a lot of sense. Have a look.

Here's some FaceTube video of some of his sculpture. You may want to turn down the music. Why oh why do so many amateur video editors insist on forcing music into everything? I think most of the time, "nat sound" would be better. It is well shot, though. You have to shoot Emett's stuff like this, as a series of close up details. You wouldn't get it all in with just a wide shot.

It's interesting (read: disappointing) to note that so many people, when posting videos about Rowland Emett, can't resist tacking on the line "Marvelous Machines", as if they're the first person savagely clever enough to come up with that description. It's ironic that Emett was so inventive and original, and people use that stupid cliche to celebrate his work. This reminds me of the phrase "think outside the box". In praising originality, we use tired, pre-packaged thoughts and worn out catch phrases. Well done, us. People who urge you enthusiastically to "think outside the box!!!" have never even seen the edge of "the box", let alone spent any time thinking outside it.

Here's a news reel on Emett from British Pathe', which, by the way, has uploaded tons of their clips to FaceTube, indexed into playlists no less. Thanks, Pathe'!

In this video, they mention his design work for Chitty Chitty Bang bang. I had a feeling he had some involvement in the Willy Wonka movie also, but facts don't seem to bear this out. We couldn't find any evidence that he worked on that film.

His stuff doesn't really represent well at small scale, which makes today's ad a little unfortunate. It's about 4" by 4.5". Good thing that promoted guy I fired spotted it. We can use a sharp-eyed go-getter like him around here. I should hire him.

Click for big.


Fil said...

Damn fine investigating. Send that no-good do-gooder over to the NonPhilter Studios. We need a fresh young upstart around to serve walking papers to. Rowland Emmett is God-like.

Mat Black said...

Maybe they used a beehive in their logo, because the "B" in P&B Wool actually stands for "bee".

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