Much is now known about Malcolm the designer / aerodynamicist, and indeed, several older article suggest the beauty of his designs was purely coincidental; in following aerodynamic rules and flows, the shapes were merely a happy accident – or so they say.

But having a father who taught the unusual combination of Maths (linear, logical but also creative thinking) and Art (abstract, challenging and aesthetic thinking) it’s no surprise that Malcolm went on to produce such beautiful designs. Those who knew him or delved a little deeper, will know of Malcolm’s artistic flair.

Click thumbnails to view image gallery
© Pictures reproduced with kind permission from Loughborough University

From early days sketching and doodling to producing satirical engineering cartoons for Loughborough College’s magazine ‘The Limit’ –  inspired by cartoonists typical of the time such as Fougasse and parodying work from artists Archimboldo and Graham Laidler aka ‘Pont‘. He was joint editor of the magazine, for which he wrote reports on Rutland Hall activities and a number of pseudonymous articles. But his most important contribution to the magazine were his numerous cartoons of College life, identified by the characteristic ‘S’ signature. He wrote lively letters home, often embellished with amusing illustrations, describing the exploits of the motor club and the motor racing stars he saw at Donington and other race tracks. Copies of these letters are kept in the University Archives. He also belonged to several College societies including the Dramatic Society, the Musical Society and the Motor Club. His many club activities included stage managing ‘Les Folies Ragout’, an entertainment performed in the Theatre Royal for Rag week in 1936, and designing a club tie for the Motor Club. It is believed he also designed the Motor Club logo, and nontheless his typography skills are on fine display in this piece:

MGS Motor Club event Limit Xmas 1936 LC.PM1.19.1

Malcolm was an accomplished artist and avid painter too. Many family members have a painting of his on their walls – portraits, landscapes or local scenery.

© Malcolm Sayer Foundation

Artistic traits run throughout the Sayer family – all his children and grandchildren have artistic flair; most share his musical talents too, and both traits were very much encouraged from early ages. In fact, Malcolm’s eldest grandson also used to send his younger siblings letters packed with cartoons, dot-to-dots and puzzles, unbeknownst that his grandfather had once done the same.