Thames Water (1994-5)

Thames Water wanted educational materials about new ring main... yada yada James Pond?

Published , updated by Richard GoodwinFiled under Projects

I remember I had to interview for this gig, going all the way down to Southampton with all the wrong stuff in my portfolio and basically completely blowing the interview. Luckily there was no-one else that could do the job, so I got it anyway! They had a designer that could use Photoshop to isolate the image of a tree from a photo, but not create a tree from scratch in 256 colours and chopped into standard tiles (32x32 pixels?).

For some reason Thames Water wanted to produce educational materials to publicise a new ring main that went around/under most of London, and somehow that became a game licensing the use of the popular James Pond character.  So I had to produce all sorts of graphics for various areas of London; other parts of the "journey" that water goes on (lakes, plumbing inside a house, high street pipes burst by a careless digger etc.).; and screens for various game controls (such as the tape recorder that gave James his "mission").

I even went on to do the layout and illustration for the accompanying booklet, which was full of educational material.  Fun fact: it was written by a teacher who wrote novelisations of the Cracker TV show (Robbie Coltrane as a psychologist that helped the police... although his boss, Christopher Ecclestone, did get killed by Robert Carlisle.  Um, spoilers.).

More importantly it was the first time I worked with Jason Tribbeck, who kept my (ridiculous, see-through) business card which led to us working together at ArgoNet.