Station approach

My grandmother, Nina Luschwitz
As this is my first column I was asked to introduce myself. I’m marketing director and partner at Hotfoot Design, we’re based in the beautiful Storey building in town. When I’m not meeting with clients to discuss their brand, website or marketing, I’m Dad to two boys, Oscar and Mateo, aged 8 and 5, and husband to Nayeli.

I grew up in Thurnham, just south of Lancaster, where my Dad’s side of the family stretches back generations. My great-grandfather’s family owned the windmill in Pilling (now converted into a house) and my grandfather established the two garages in Cockerham, and liked to invent things, including a petrol economising device for which he was awarded a patent in 1937.

My Mum’s side of the family is quite exotic. My grandmother, Nina Luschwitz, was born in India to parents with German, Portuguese and Indian heritage, and had two children before her husband died in a motorcyle accident. My grandfather’s family had emigrated from Dublin to England, he joined the army during the Second World War, and after Sandhurst was posted to India where he met and married my widowed grandmother. They moved to Lancaster after the war, and had twins, one of which was my Mum.

I went to Cockerham primary, then Garstang High, and then the Grammar for sixth form. After a gap year working and travelling (and drinking) I went to uni in Nottingham and stayed there to start a design magazine. After a few years I joined a London based PR firm and worked with big clients like Braun, Microsoft and Woodland Trust.

I got married to Nayeli in 2004, with a wedding in her home country of Mexico. I worked at a startup, and then started my own with a friend. I travelled to London every week for four years, but with two young children that wasn’t ideal, and so I’m happy to be working here again.

Growing up I wanted to live in New York, and I didn’t think I’d be living in Lancaster now, but as I walk to the office in the shadow of the castle, with the Ashton Memorial catching the sun on the hill, I can’t help but feel I made the right choice to return.

Ashton Memorial
A view across Lancaster from Williamson Park

This post first appeared in the Lancaster Guardian, where I write a column. 

Station approach

When television was new


From JF Ptak Science Books:

This cover (above) from Popular Science (February 1949) speaks to those early television times to me, the screen hosted in multiple layers of framing that gives it an appearance of a piece of art, which it was.

This pamphlet was delivered by Allen Du Mont Labs (1946) with the popular dictum that color television was not only possible but a probable near-term you-can-have-it-now reality.  The unfolded pamphlet cover also forms an interesting imaginary green-sky citiscape with a very stubby tv antenna foreground:


This is a copyright deposit copy of the RCA Everyman introductory pamphlet on how television works.  It really isn’t so very Everyman-ish, at all…except maybe it was for 1939:


I like this view (Popular Science, June 1946) because of the severely oblique bird’s-eye looking down/north on the tv antenna of the Empire State Building, sitting on top of the 102nd floor observation deck.  If you look closely you’ll see that there’s some sort of assembly going on:


See JF Ptak Science Books for more.

When television was new