New year, new ambigrams! Well, this particular ambigram was created in 2010, but who cares;-)
This piece was created for the ‘Quick Draw‘ competition on Two ambigram artist have to create an ambigram of a given word within a week. The word we had to work with was ‘Casablanca’.

Here are the first scribbles I did:

My solution was pretty clear from the start: The ‘CA’ at the beginning of the word would have to symmetrical to turn into the ‘CA’ at the end. Which did not leave much room to play with the other letters. The main problem was ‘B/LA’ combination. The ‘L’ hat to keep it’s own characteristics but form the curvy part of the ‘B’.

Next I did a clearer sketch of the letters, scanned it and started drawing the lines in Illustrator:

I started experimenting with a graphical element and was pretty content with the result. Until I showed it to a colleague and asked him if he could read the word. The answer was ‘Something with a ‘d’ at the end?’. I  had to rework the letters!

I added some angles to the ‘C’s and straightened the design a little bit. Now it was much easier to read. I added some inner lines and was very pleased with the outcome.

Photoshop-Time! I wanted the final image to have a nice black and white/film noir feeling and to look like a name plate. Add some smoke and voila:

And that’s it! Take look here, to see how Anoop Pai B handled the problem.