True art can come from unexpected places. Like the State of California Department of Transportation, whose Project Report #0712000035 was shaping up to look just like Project Report #0712000034 — until an enterprising young staffer decided to give it a little flair.
The government is not known for its design acumen, from its egregious abuse of PowerPoint to its insane Clipart mis-0steps. But an anonymous employee in charge of creating the cover for Caltrans' 1,316-page report on a highway and railway — the High Desert Corridor — in southern California had other ideas. If you don't want to ruin your expectations for all other government reports forever by actually inspecting this thing (below), let me summarise a few of the highlights for you:
- A peyote eagle riding an experimental racing bike
- A glowing turtle whose shell is emblazoned with BRAD's name
- A yellow rose floating amid a field of futuristic wind turbines
- Two neon hatchbacks rolling down a ghostly desert highway
- A beautiful butterfly
So who is this mysterious Brad? The LA Times investigates:
The desert tortoise was named for former San Bernardino County Supervisor Brad Mitzelfelt, a champion of the High Desert Corridor project, Kosinski said. After six years in public office, he lost a primary election for a U.S. House seat in 2012. "It's really nice that someone thought of me," said Mitzelfelt, reached by phone in Kentucky, where he now lives.