Motive Culture AKA Graphic Designer Darren Curtis
“I had an epiphany while walking around the NEC Classic Car Show one year. I’ve had a passion for graphically illustrated posters for years and having attended many car shows seeing reproductions or other artwork for sale, I thought I can do this!”
Darren has worked in the field of graphic design and branding for 25 years alongside a range of companies such as Autocar, BMW, Fast Ford, PistonHeads and Classic & Sports Car. More recently as Lead HMI Design Engineer on the McLaren Elva and is currently Graphic Design Manager for Gordon Murray Design (of McLaren F1 and T50 fame). “I’ve tried to work with brands I have a passion for, and have been lucky enough to do so.”
Motive Culture was founded in October 2017, then launched at the NEC Classic Motor Show a year later in November 2018 and since then has attended numerous shows including the International Historic Motorsport Show Race Retro at Stoneleigh, Coventry; Bicester Heritage Sunday Scramble and the first sponsored show; Classics at the Clubhouse, in Kingsclere, Hampshire.
“Each piece is created using Adobe Illustrator with a mix of Photoshop and takes a good few days to produce a single vehicle. Many of my prints have yellow headlamps – for no other reason than I think they look cool." says Darren.
“I wanted to add something different to my prints. Using the Motive Culture logo with its stripes and a large roundel sets the design so those who order Motive Culture prints are getting exclusive pieces because I don’t produce thousands of each design”
A number of automotive artists have been an inspiration for his work: “Influences are everywhere, but for years I’ve been collecting vintage posters by Géo Ham who really has inspired me. I have a selection of 1970s Monaco Grand Prix prints in my studio and they always remind me to ask: ‘Would I hang this design on my wall?’ If the answer is ‘yes’ the design continues, if I’m not happy with it, it gets binned."
In addition to having a passion for his artwork, Darren is equally enthusiastic about the subject matter. He is the owner of a modified 1994 Rover Classic Mini (owned for 22 years), 1990 Mk1 Mazda MX-5 and a classic Subaru Impreza Turbo 2000 Estate which is used to haul poster stock and equipment to shows.
Sharing poster chat with renowned Porsche ambassador Magnus Walker.