Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Anatomy of a Logo: The Ring of the Nibelung, Part 2

On September 7, 1989, I met with Andy to discuss the logo. The decision was made to use the third logo design but with the “R” from the second one (see part 1 for all three designs).

A few days later, I began work on the logo art. A tight rendering was made on tracing paper. “The” was cut apart and moved slightly closer to “Ring”. This rendering was enlarged on a photocopier.

Next, I sketched out “of the Nibelung”, which was done on top of an arch I had drawn. Out of all the math formulas I learned in school, the most useful was the one for determining the circumference of a circle.

The finished art was done on vellum and India ink. I sprayed an adhesive on the back of the vellum and mounted “The Ring” on illustration board. White gouache was used for corrections. The vellum with “of the Nibelung” was mounted on acetate and overlaid on “The Ring”. The logo was delivered to Andy on September 19. 

When the logo was returned to me, I noticed a pinkish stain on the acetate overlay. Someone in the DC production staff had made a film positive of “of the Nibelung” and on it wrote in marker: “The Ring” by Richard Wagner + Alex Jay. The film positive was under the acetate and the marker ink had transferred to the acetate.

Below are the covers of the four books. Later, the stories were reprinted in a single volume.

(Tomorrow: The Metropolitan Opera’s Ring cycle bannersNeal Adams illustration for the 1990 Ring of the Nibelung)