EJ Viso is a long-time friend and customer of the team at JLF Designs and likes to use different themes for his helmet designs which relate to the track the helmet will be used at. His cousin Juanco is a designer working in Milan, Italy and he comes up with the ideas for the designs which we then translate into the painted artwork.

Side view

E.J. Viso's Nature Inspired Helmet Art

For the Canada races, EJ wanted a design that reflected the nature of the venues from a completely different perspective so Juanco went to work on some ideas and came up with a design featuring the Canadian Danaus Plexippus butterfly. Here’s his explanation of the inspiration behind the design:

Juanco:“Danaus plexippus / evolution baby: this precise family of butterfly is the National insect of Canada, that’s why we thought it would blend perfect on the Canadian scene. After all, to win, one has to move fast and alert on rainy Toronto and almost fly over the bumpy and tricky tracks of Edmonton…As a final detail we added the caterpillar that curls shaping the number 8…good metaphor for EJ’s Indy career evolution…”

E.J. Viso's Helmet Art

Figure Eight Caterpillar

We set to work on the paintwork and the task of making the Butterfly fit the helmet shape without too much distortion. As the colours went on it became obvious that the solid shapes of the original design looked a little flat and not very lifelike so I used some rough airbrush texturing to give the colours a soft transition between the colours. Then when the paintwork was finished I used a gloss base for the white and a matt finish for the butterfly to give a contrast between the two, and to give the butterfly the soft, powdery look they have.


Wings for E.J.Viso

We also painted a special for Dan Wheldon to be used at the Edmonton race featuring the Oilers logo and a cartoon Knight dressed up as an ice-hockey goalkeeper. We spent a lot of time putting together a design using the Oilers colours and shades of icy blue and we were really pleased with the final outcome. However… corporate red-tape tripped us up as Dan’s team learned that Ford are a sponsor of the Oilers hockey team and don’t allow the logo to be used without permission, which wasn’t likely to be given to a helmet carrying a Honda logo..! This meant the helmet couldn’t be used but here are some photos anyway!”

Dan Wheldon's helmet for Edmonton
Dan Wheldon’s Helmet Art
Dan Wheldon's Helmet Art

Sweet Graphics for Dan Wheldon's Helmet


There is one comment for this post.

  1. Sean on July 28, 2010 2:30 pm

    I’ve never understood companies forbidding FREE advertising…you know if Dan’s helmet had been used the TV and other media coverage would have done a special story about it.

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