Notes From The Editor

Editor’s Note: Learning from the Master

Over the last few weeks, I’ve had the pleasure of speaking to some of the Class of 1988 from Coventry University as part of our new feature series Decades of Design.

This week I spoke to 1987 graduate Michael (Mick) Leach, who together with his team, has been behind projects such as award-winning 96m Palladium, 67m Solemar (now Calypso), 67m Anna (now Anna I) and the new 110m Feadship build called Project 1007.

The easy-going Englishman shared many of his memories from the last 30 years, recalling the emotions experienced over his career while drawing attention to the people and moments that helped to achieve all that he has to date.

One name that stood out was the legendary concept artist Sydney (or more commonly known as Syd) Mead. He's an industrial designer well-known within the superyacht design community, especially to those who love the art of hand-drawn work. And you don’t need to be a designer to have come across his works, as it was Mead who produced a lot of the stunning imagery for the original Blade Runner, Aliens and the futuristic movie picture Tron.

Syd Mead is an incredible genius of a man that developed a load of books and all the visuals were all hand-drawn and painted,” says Mick Leach during our interview. “The quality is just stunning and out of this world, and I could look at his drawings for weeks and weeks. To this day, I’ve not seen anyone draw as well as he does — there is nobody in our design world that comes close to what he can do.

Having flicked through some of his books, I completely agree with Leach, as Mead's incredible level of skill is mesmerising. I have always marvelled at those who are able to effectively and accurately sketch ideas and visuals that astound and awe the viewer, especially those pieces created in front of an audience.

While there are a number of talented designers that are able to sketch freehand, it is the Syd Meads of the world that inspire others to push that little further to perfect their craft. We can all learn something from masters such as Mead, which is one of the reasons for establishing this new design series.

Discover more about Leach and the names who have influenced him in our next edition of Decades of Design.

Syd Mead is an incredible genius of a man that developed a load of books and all the visuals were all hand-drawn and painted.
Mick Leach