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Martin Lambie-Nairn obituary

Co-creator of Spitting Image and graphic designer who transformed broadcast branding

Martin Lambie-Nairn, who has died aged 75, broke new ground in branding television networks and commercial goods and services. His idents – moving logos shown between programmes – to identify the BBC and Channel 4 in the UK were so hugely popular that they even received fan mail for their wit and originality.

An early adopter of computer animation, Martin used it to create the bold and colourful “animated blocks” identity for the launch of Channel 4 in 1982. Advertisers quickly saw the potential of involving Martin in numerous popular campaigns, including those for Smarties and Hamlet Cigars, the latter a parody of the Channel 4 ident, with its blocks not coming together properly until settling into a resigned but contented cigar-smoking face. It won an award at the Cannes advertising festival in 1985.

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