To capitalize on fan excitement about the yet-to-be-revealed Volvo S60, the company gave them a unique way to preview the vehicle. It invited blind artist Esref Armagan to its design center in Sweden to paint what chief designer Peter Horbury calls "the next of the new Volvo." The painting would be all enthusiasts would see of the car until its official release. For the so-called "Blind Preview" campaign, the company created a mini-documentary, featured on their Facebook page and also posted on YouTube, that follows the artist through the fascinating process of his painting.
Armagan first meets with Horbury, who explains why this Volvo is so special. "Volvo has been famous for its station wagons and boxy cars of the past," Horbury tells the artist. "And we changed a few years ago to something much more dynamic." To which Armagan replies merely, "Are they going to let me drive it?"
Armagan has been blind since birth and has taught himself to paint using a method that he created. He begins by running his hands all over the car (and fans get a little tease of what it looks like) and then creates a putty outline on the canvas based on this feel-up. He paints only with his fingers since "it's impossible for me to understand whether there's paint on the brush" and waits for each color to dry completely to avoid unwanted blending.
Renowned for his ability to paint perspective (something previously thought to be impossible in a blind artist) his painting of the S60 is something you just have to see for yourself. You'll have to wait until next year to see the real thing, but, let's be honest, the painting is probably more interesting anyway.