Big Ideas from a Small World

Poptimistic: the upbeat, day-glo brightness of a technicolour future.

Posted in Uncategorized by Ryan Thomas on March 9, 2009

Shepard Fairey’s OBEY imagery to one of HOPE (if I have to link those you have been living in a cave).

Logo design has even adopted this new trend. Pepsi, Kraft, Walmart are all sporting new poptimistic logos.



Simply put in the last few months advertising has really jumped on the World Fair’s band wagon – if this retro optimism feels familiar that’s because it is.

Watch these two videos and if you don’t get a sense of deja vu you’re doing it wrong.

First up is Microsoft’s vision of 2019:

Now watch this retro spot from the Philco-Ford Corporation made in 1967:

I’m still waiting for my rocket car.

*Fun Fact*
Retro versions of the future are called The Paleo-Future.


2 Responses

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  1. jwtanxietyindex said, on March 9, 2009 at 11:08 am

    Another good example of poptimistic is the campaign from Western Union. The company has print ads with copy like “Can love be transferred? YES!” and “Can I give her a reason to smile? YES!” It also incorporates design that makes use of the sunny yellow in the Western Union logo.

    • Ryan Thomas said, on March 9, 2009 at 12:44 pm

      I would love a link to an example of this work, is it futuristic as some of the old world’s fair stuff? Or with more of a modern sensibility.
      Maybe something for JWT’s Anxiety Index?

      I smile the more people I see in the little black column.

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