Thursday, April 9, 2015

1953 Styling Sketches by Wayne Takeuchi

The October 1953 issue of Hop Up magazine, its title transitioning to Motor Life, was edited by George Hill, who just had the job handed over from respected automotive journalist Dean Batchelor.   Its feature article by another noted (at the time) writer, Eugene Jaderquist, was "1954 Styling Predictions."  The magazine cover and article were illustrated by Wayne Takeuchi, described as a 21 year old scholarship student at the Art Center School in Los Angeles (now the Art Center College of Design, located in Pasadena, California).  Unfortunately, neither my own library resources nor a short Google search turned up anything regarding Takeuchi's professional career; if anyone can supply details, please comment.

The predictive sketches were not particularly accurate, but I was taken by the cover illustrations of a small, sporty Lincoln designed by Takeuchi.


Scan of the magazine cover.

Rendering of the design for a Lincoln (perhaps Ford Motor Company funded Takeuchi's scholarship).  The most creative feature is the way the backlight (jargon for back window) is linked to the rear side windows.  The normal treatment would be a stout C-pillar.  Moreover, a 1953-vintage hardtop would have no B-pillar, the side windows retracting to yield a convertible-like void between the A- (front) and C- (rear) pillars supporting the roof.  In effect, Takeuchi pulled a styling switcheroo and made it look very attractive.

Front and rear 3/4 views of the Lincoln design.  It seems too airy for Lincoln, a luxury brand, but might have made for a nice Ford, Chevrolet or Studebaker.

Some of Takeuchi's 1954 prediction sketches.


Anonymous said...

Hi Donald! You can only imagine my excitement when I saw your post about my grandfather's work. I've emailed my mom who will be happy to contact you with more information about his career. One of his proudest moments in the beginnings of his design career was when the car he designed was presented at the World's Fair. At the time he was working for GM in Detroit. His life and work were fascinating. He would have loved to meet you.

Unknown said...

Hi Donald! Yes, this is my father's work and I'd be happy to share with you about him. Please contact me via:

Thank you for showing your interest.

Donald Pittenger said...

And Hi to you, Anonymous & Unknown! -- Things are a bit hectic at my place for the next couple of days but I'll try emailing once matters settle. Appreciate it that you found the blog and the Takeuchi post.