It’s 1946 and you’re interested in car design but don’t know where to start. Back in Detroit Harley Earl is looking for car designers. Design schools are starting to ramp up, but in the mean time how do you prepare to be a car designer? And how does Harley Earl find you? Would you consider answering an ad in Popular Science and enroll in the Detroit Institute of Automotive Styling and taking a correspondence course through the Institute? If you made the cut, you could get hired at GM’s Art and Colour Section. That’s just how a lot of designers got their start back in those days. Geoff Hacker of Forgotten Fiberglass clued me in on the Detroit Institute of Automotive Styling which I had no previous knowledge. I thought the ads in the back of Popular Science were mostly bogus. I guess not. Apparently Popular Science was well read by those interested in car design. If you went through this program, email Dean’s Garage with your experiences.
Detroit Institute Ad from Popular Mechanics, December, 1946
Gallery of images from the Detroit Institute of Automotive Styling Course.
The Detroit Institute has competition from Presto! Master Glaze; A booklet on How to Cut Rafters; Easy-to-Make Homecraft Novelties; Comb-A-Trim, the New Quick Trimmer (my parents had one of those); 12 pounds of Surplus Radio Parts; and NEW Cheap Oil Burner. “I don’t know what to do. Should I become a car stylist or make novelties at home? I gotta decide.”