Jimi Crayon gets playful with American Express
Companies as iconic as American Express are firm in their brand identity. In their 160-year history, AmEx has fostered a reputation as being a serious financial institution that offers leverage into financial security and responsibility. They represent a rite of passage. The first green card is a ticket to financial maturity, and a first step into adulthood. But that doesn’t mean they can’t have a little fun.
This season AmEx, through the agency Alldayeveryday, tapped a bunch of artists to reinterpret their classic cards in their Card Art series. Jimi Crayon was one of those artists, and he worked with one of the most established brands in the world. Each card retains Jimi’s signature hand drawn style, with scrawled lines, interspersed between the evolving sophistication of other elements. Each card almost represents a stepping-stone for that portion of life where one might hold that card. As Jimi says, “you end up with a subtle evolution from light-hearted and fun to photographic to classic.“
First, in the green card, we have drawn donuts and hotdogs, showing a fun, carefree nature. The gold card has crisp, angular diamonds for a smoother feel. Finally, the platinum card features the timeless opulence of photographed flowers; images of a life well lived. “The word Platinum evokes feelings of modern prestige, so I knew I wanted to end up with something clean, classic, and almost luxurious”
It’s not every day a brand like AmEx reaches out for a fresh take on their timeless products. “Working closely with a company like AmEx to create something special is obviously a dream,” Jimi says. “It feels great to be given that kind of trust and respect.” That kind of freedom and respect is rare when working on that level. It’s a credit to American Express that they’re willing to reach out to the creative community to help inject a new kind of energy and recontextualize their identity. “It’s great to see a 160-year old company continuing to innovate and doing something a little different,” says Jimi. “It’s quite amazing that they’ve invited artists to help reinterpret them.”