News & Notes

My New Books


Picking the best and boldest dog and cat food labels for my two new books was easy. I have the world’s largest collection.The hard part was finding the perfect quote and “words of wisdom” to go along with each wonderful work of label art. I was also lucky to have a fantastic publisher, Insight Editions, that appreciated our vision that dog and cat books can be literate and artistic as well as fun or even funny. Award winning artist, Masud Husain did the graphic design.

Dog Food for Thought and its companion book, Cat Food for Thought will be in gift shops and book stores April 15th.



I am working on another book about advertising (debuting Spring 2015) and in the process came across this wonderful bar of soap. At first I just assumed the “Dry” in Dryad had something to do with an antiperspirant. It does. Dryad was the brand name of a modestly popular deodorant in the 1950’s. I assume the company expanded their product line in the late 1960’s to include soap bars. This of course was the dawn of the Flower Power generation with its interest in health and nature and you can see that influence in the label graphics.

What I didn’t know was that the graphic artist responsible for the label design was also referencing Greek mythology. Dryads are female spirits of nature also known as “wood nymphs.” They preside over groves and forests, more specifically a single tree which the Dryad watches—either living in the tree as part of it, or close to it. Their lives are so connected with that of the tree—that should the tree perish the Dryad dies with it. If caused by a mortal, the gods will punish him for that deed. The Dryads themselves also will punish any thoughtless mortal who would somehow injure the tree. If you want to see Hollywood’s version of Dryads, they are featured in The Chronicles of Narnia.

So there you have it. The DRYness of an antiperspirant + The AD in advertisement + The DRYAD of Greek mythology.

Sour Grapes


Another silly vintage gumball vending machine card.

I’ve never really understood the attraction of sour candy, especially a sour candy for kids. At work, I sometimes give a lollipop to really well-behaved little ones and the Charms Sour Apple Blow Pops are as popular as the sweet Tootsie Pops. The graphic artist here went to the trouble of putting a sour pucker face on every grape, although to me some of the grapes look a bit depressed. Ever wonder why humans respond to sour taste with a pucker face? There’s all types of theories on the internet.