One of the reasons I got into advertising in the first place was my childhood fascination with the ad illustrations of Art Fitzpatrick and Van Kaufman, which I discovered in my dad's old magazine collection in our basement. These two artists were the best (and most prolific) team in the history of automobile advertising, producing over 800 illustrations for various carmakers between 1951 and 1973. I sought out and became friends with Art Fitzpatrick in 2010. Van Kaufman's son Kris, and Art Fitzpatrick himself, allowed me to interview them, resulting in a series of video recordings and research notes that eventually evolved into this 200-page coffee table book.
I traveled the country interviewing Fitzpatrick and Kaufman's colleagues, and photographing original paintings owned by museums and private collectors. One of the most exciting aspects of creating the book was finding original layouts, preliminary sketches, and reference photos that had never been published. I also uncovered the history of the art directors and ad agencies that the artists had worked with – the real Mad Men of the 1960s.
I promoted the book through organic social posts, paid Facebook advertising, and in-person events. Major automotive websites like Car And Driver and Hagerty published articles and positive book reviews, resulting in millions of impressions. Thousands of copies of the book sold within the first year.
I also produced a 12-minute documentary, which allowed me to utilize YouTube, Vimeo and other video-based platforms to raise awareness of the book.