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Ogilvy creates optical illusion to sell Smart Car in Hong Kong

The nimble, Smart Fortwo, by Smart Car is the perfect car for navigating Hong Kong’s narrow and congested streets or so is what the brand hopes to convince potential buyers of. To illustrate the Smart Fortwo’s unique size, Ogilvy & Mather Group Hong Kong created 3D posters of Hong Kong streets to hang in Mercedes-Benz showrooms, where Smart Car is sold in Hong Kong. The posters were created in collaboration with acclaimed Hong Kong illustrator, Jonathan Jay Lee.


The posters incorporate an art technique known as reverse perspective, which creates an optical illusion in the objects at the forefront of the drawing appear furthest away and vice-versa. Objects farther away from the ‘viewing plane’ – the plane onto which an object is projected – are drawn as larger and closer objects are drawn as smaller.

Jonathan Jay Lee used reverse perspective to exaggerate the narrowness of Hong Kong streets and thus, convey the usefulness of a Smart Fortwo in navigating the city.

Reed Collins, Chief Creative Officer at Ogilvy & Mather Group Hong Kong, said, “Hong Kong has such narrow and crowded streets, yet so many people drive oversized cars, which can be difficult to manoeuvre and park at times. We brought this issue to life in the showroom with Jonathan’s incredible illustrations. It’s effective in showing customers the value of the Smart Fortwo at the point of purchase.”

Shubhi Tandon

Shubhi Tandon is the Assistant Editor at Digital Market Asia. Fascinated by the evolving digital media industry, she has focussed on tracking developments in the Asia Pacific market since 2014.