Joe Zeff Design

A boutique agency that blends software with storytelling, helping the world's largest companies tell better stories.

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Another TIME cover!

For the second consecutive week we've been commissioned to illustrate the cover of TIME magazine. This week we've created a photorealistic rendering of the Curiosity rover on the surface of Mars, accompanied by the headline "What we can learn from a robot 154 million miles away." Last week we illustrated our eighth TIME cover, a photo-illustration of a for sale sign in front of the White House. To see it, and the other TIME covers we've created through the years, have a look here.

While Curiosity captures images of Mars, there's nobody on Mars capturing images of Curiosity — except Curiosity itself. That's where Joe Zeff Design comes in. Ed Gabel started and finished the rendering the same day using NewTek LightWave 3D, the software we've used for more than a decade to create hundreds of magazine covers, advertisements and album artwork. Here's a look at the sketches . . .

rising over ridge

the wireframe model . . .


. . . and the final cover showing Curiosity . . . if you're curious!


This is the third Mars-related TIME cover that we've been involved with. Ed illustrated this cover in 2004, also using LightWave:


And Joe designed this cover when he was Deputy Art Director of TIME, in 1997:


Once again, many thanks to Creative Director D.W. Pine and team at TIME.

On a related note, Joe will share the stage with D.W. and his counterparts at Newsweek Daily Beast and Huffington Magazine for a Society of Publication Designers event Sept. 10 in New York City, focused on the changing state of newsmagazines. Details here.