In 1978 I was fortunate enough to meet Abram Games. I was a student and he was my hero. I didn’t know at the time, but I was just about to win the Royal Society of Arts Design Bursary Competition with a campaign that was inspired by his work.
I found out about him because I had started collecting Festival of Britain memorabilia (from junk shops on Tyneside). This action in itself was inspired by the amazingly tacky crap available in 1977 for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee.
Games’ work was simple, bold, dynamic and full of hope, excitement and anticipation for all things new and modern. The ideas, typography and illustration – although dated – are still brilliant and I never tire of looking at it. If Games were alive today I am sure he would reveal where he got his inspiration… the work of another graphic genius, Edward McKnight Kauffer.
However, when it comes to real grassroots inspiration, you need to meet my Auntie Betty; she shaped me, her house was full of the best kitsch ornaments and paintings. As a consequence I have started my own homage, with a small collection of prints by Vladimir Tretchikoff and JH Lynch.