Ian Fleming’s James Bond: The Illustrated 007 by Brian Berley

Brian Berley is an illustrator, new media consultant, and sometimes-contributor to HMSS (he covered the 2002 London James Bond exposition for us in 007 Exposed). He’s also a lifelong James Bond fan, and a way-cool guy. Some years back, he showed us some illustrations he’d been working on based on Ian Fleming’s novel Thunderball. We were knocked out by his dynamic and colorful artwork, and by his faithfulness to the original book — while avoiding the iconography of the Eon film. His take on the physiognomy of James Bond was simultaneously unique and exactly correct. Very exciting stuff.

© Brian Berley


As it turns out, that first chapter of the Blofeld trilogy wasn’t all Brian was working on. Picking out interesting scenes from most of the rest of the Fleming canon, he put his imagination and art tools to work to bring them to amazing life. We have a feeling there’s a book somewhere in the future, for which we can’t wait, but in the meantime we (and you all) can get a taste of this unique take on Ian Fleming’s world on YouTube. Check out Ian Fleming’s James Bond: The Illustrated 007 by Brian Berley for a looksee. We’re pretty sure you’ll be glad you did!

3 Responses

  1. This is one hell of a great piece! I discovered it last night by chance through Facebook, then, when I saw it again here, clicked and enjoyed it every bit as much or more (start to finish) than the first time I saw it.

    Your summary nicely captures what it is, and how it’s different. Indeed, rare.

    But a book? I think that risks losing so much of what makes this a thoroughly immersive experience. I’ve gotta think something that would lend itself to the iPad, or an iPhone (Droid, et cetera) app.

    I’d pay for that!

    Expanding on this, I’d encourage some thinking about event licensing as a key market. For example, when the Detroit Symphony Orchestra did its Bond and Beyond concert earlier this year, they a television running clips from 007 films in the lobby. Nice. But hard to follow. And tough for dates and spouses and others who weren’t die-hard James Bond fans, who’d accompanied us, caught a glance of these setups, but couldn’t really follow them out-of-context.

    Closer to home, when we did our Bond Enthusiasts Weekend at the National Watch & Clock Museum last September, something such as this, running on a loop, with its phenomenal audio track, would have been ideal ambiance.

    Consider something along those lines, per a full release in the 40-minute range.

    And, while we’re talking about content–

    It would be great to see a vignette or two with James Bond using his Rolex 1016 Explorer as a knuckle-duster. It’s never been used in a movie, the watch never well-captured in illustration.

    Dell Deaton
    JamesBondWatches.com

  2. To the editors: Thankyou very kindly for your generous write-up here. ‘Don’t know if ever this collection will appear in book form, you’ll be the first to know!

    Preemptively, the artist acknowledges the discovery of certain omissions and inaccuracies in the imagery — most notably, perhaps, the depiction of the Aston Martin DB5 vs the DB3 which Bond actually drove in “Goldfinger.” I’m certain the Bonderatti shall have a fine time performing a “final edit” on these illustrations.

    Nonetheless, I hope most are pleased with my efforts to capture Fleming’s Bond.

    – B

  3. […] Ian Fleming’s James Bond: Filed under: Friends of HMSS, HMSS People, James Bond Books Tagged: Brian Berley, Ian Fleming’s James Bond: the illustrated 007, James Bond artwork No Comments » […]

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