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Kawasaki Dirt Bike Print Campaign

This series of full-color, spread ads are from a two-year print campaign developed for Kawasaki's line of dirt bikes while I was working as Associate Creative Director at Bozell Worldwide in Los Angeles. During this period, Cameron Day and I, and then later with Steve Landrum, we had the opportunity to create some wonderful, clean, double-page spreads for the dirt bike portion of Kawasaki.

The first sample won my first Art Director's pencil for creative use of type which was awesome in that I hand-cut the headline font which was then made available by Drew Andresen of Andresen Typographics. That was back when when type was set using a Photo Typositor and the desktop computer was an Apple Quadra 700. It was the first of three headline fonts I created that they found cool enough to include in their type books.

  • Kawasaki Motorcycles
  • Bozell Worldwide
  • Scott Young, Mel Newhoff
  • Michael Pitzer
  • Cameron Day
  • Steve Landrum
  • Mark McIntyre
  • Pitzer/Day #1
  • 1992
KDX200 and KDX250 Kawasaki motorcyle print ad
KX Kawasaki motorcyle print ad

The ad above was created in one shot for all of the parts and one stripped in inset for the KX. The main shot was taken using an 8x10 camera by Mark McIntyre. We rented the tallest photo studio in Los Angeles and removed one of the large air vents on the roof to shoot through. Using walkie-talkies and string, we laid out the disassembled bike to the exact specification of the magazine using the string to map out bleed, live and trim as well as gutter specs.

KDX250 Kawasaki motorcyle print ad with Larry Rosseler

In this ad, featuring an extremely dirty KDX200 and even muddier Larry Roeseler, this was the first time Kawasaki ever allowed an ad to run without a traditional "beauty shot" of their featured motorcycle.

KX250 Kawasaki motorcyle print ad

We also tried to find the right type font for each ad hoping to reflect more on the image of the event than the brand of Kawasaki. My mistake to do so. At that time there just weren't many great type fonts on desktop computers and I think I really hurt the overall art direction trying to work with what the agency did have — basically crap.