London 2012 Mascots

Given that the recent unveiling of the mascots for the 2012 Olympic Games last night has caused such an opinionated response I felt I should thrown my in two cents too.

My initial reaction last night to the duo of  Wenlock and Mandeville wasn’t very positive to be honest, but having seen and read more about them this morning I’m already coming around to them a bit more.

They are both clearly designed for our increasingly digital generation, and their semi-undefined limbs morph and allow positioning to ‘participate’ in a number of sporting events which offers fantastic flexibility from an advertising and promotion  point of view.  I’m not a huge fan of their overly metallic appearance, I much prefer the union jack render which I think looks really great. 

 

The recent Winter Olympics proved a huge hit across all social media so it stands to reason that our games will be too, hence Wenlock and Mandeville look ready prepared to be plastered across the internet, billboards, tv and any other animations you can think of.  Even merchandise has been considered for their application, which is so important as a revenue stream and support for the games.  To top it off they both already have their own Twitter pages too, follow @iamwenlock and @iammandeville.

I think all of us will come to adore these guys though, their anthropomorphic nature is really quite appealing when it comes down to it.  Remember the outrage and dislike of the 2012 logo?  I’ll admit I wasn’t a fan of that either, but now many months on I’ve come to like it, especially when it is used appropriately across a range of digital media.  It simply works, and I think this will be the case for the mascots.  I even like them a bit more since I’ve started writing this.

What I have learned this morning, that I didn’t get from the One Show last night, is some of the detail in the design.  Both are said to be “born from drops of steel from London’s Olympic Stadium” which gives a nice story and background to them (even if their metallic appearance isn’t my favourite), and the Olympic rings as bracelets on Wenlock are a great touch.  Even the yellow light in their foreheads inspired by Hackney Cabs seem like a fantastic detail recognising London, and their eyes are in fact camera lenses hinting at the coverage the games will have and allowing them to record events from a somewhat unique perspective.  Even that (initially hated) 2012 logo on them looks the part.

Full character design notes on the Iris site.

And let’s be honest, they certainly don’t look as bad as some Olympic mascots we’ve seen in the past, and no one batted an outraged eyelid toward them did they?

More images of them both here, and in an animation here.

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2 Responses to “London 2012 Mascots”


  1. 1 Arlena Carwell May 11, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Excellent work over again! I am looking forward for your next post=)


  1. 1 Rio 2016 Olympics « Inspirational Geek Trackback on January 5, 2011 at 10:59 pm

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