MSC Euribia: Meet one of five finalists set to design new ship's hull
By Claire Benktander | 29 Apr 2022
We chat to one of the finalists of MSC Cruises’ exclusive international design competition to create a unique artwork for the hull of new vessel MSC Euribia, set to become the line’s most environmentally advanced ship and the second LNG ship in the MSC Cruises fleet.
MSC Euribia will strike a markedly different silhouette than her sister ships in the Meraviglia-Plus class, thanks to an exclusive artwork designed as a commitment by MSC Cruises to the sea.
The line held an exclusive competition through Talent House to create a unique artwork for the ship’s hull, inspired by the sea and its important marine ecosystem.
The design will be featured permanently on the ship’s hull, highlighting the steps that the cruise line is taking towards a greener future.
Designs from 59 countries worldwide were submitted and Northumberland-based freelance graphic artist Daniel Weatheritt has been revealed as one of the five finalists who will also have their designs displayed on board the ship in a new gallery. We spoke to Daniel about the competition.
What drew you to taking part in this competition?
I’m very passionate about wildlife conservation and having never worked on a creative brief linking specifically to marine conservation, coupled with the challenge of designing artwork for a huge three-dimensional cruise ship, I couldn’t say no to the opportunity.
Did you discover or learn anything new about cruising through your research – if so, what was it that stood out or you didn’t know?
It was fascinating to learn about the complexity of the operational systems on board a cruise ship, through in-depth reading of annual reports and web-based research.
I’ve never been on a cruise before so it was important that I educated myself as much as possible on the subject before tackling the creative brief. As a lover of architecture, it has been great learning about cruise ship deck design and layout. They really are astonishing pieces of engineering.
What was the inspiration behind your design?
My artwork for MSC Euribia is inspired primarily by ancient ocean creatures, also including coral reef ecosystems and ocean exploration, presented in a strong, repeating half circle graphic pattern, representative of an ocean sunrise and sunset.
The bow section takes inspiration from flowing water and wave structures, merging with a giant cephalopod.
What is the main message behind your design?
To draw attention to the outstanding design and natural beauty of some of the creatures with whom we share this world.
They’ve been around a lot longer than we (humans) have, and I find that incredibly humbling, that they’re still here, living in harmony with their marine environment. We could learn a thing or two.
What do you think is special and unique about MSC Euribia?
That the design of MSC Euribia really has sustainability at its core. Everything from energy efficiency considerations on board, to waste water management systems, special hull paint treatments and the use of LNG-power to reduce carbon footprints longer term.
It paints a picture of a very carefully thought-out cruise ship, innovative in its design and operation, with the goal of exerting a more positive environmental impact on our fragile planet.
How did you incorporate the environmental focus of the ship into your design? Is conservation/sustainability important to you within your daily life?
This was an important consideration for me and my objective was to give an environmental focus through a carefully selected colour palette and subtle references to recycling and the man-made waste present in our ocean ecosystems, featured in some of the coral reef illustrations.
Wildlife conservation has been a big part of my creative life, having worked on several projects for Wildlife Trusts, helping to promote Red Squirrel and Hedgehog conservation. I’ve also been fortunate to have fostered a Hedgehog at my house for the last six months, providing a safe hog hotel, daily feeding and health checks in preparation for release in spring 2022. I’m also massively into upcycling (mainly wood, metal and plastics) and have built many pieces of furniture/sculpture from waste materials that would typically end up in a landfill.
How did you first get into graphic art?
I studied Graphic Design at university and have been freelancing for 10 years, working with private and public sector clients across the UK on a diverse portfolio of print-based and educational/participatory projects.
What was the most challenging part of creating the design?
The most challenging part of the overall design was the constant consideration of scale and level of detail within all of the drawings. If it was too detailed I ran the risk of overcomplicating things with images that lacked visual clarity when viewed from a distance.
Equally, going too simple with the level of detail would strip the drawings of any real character, so their production was a real balancing act.
Are there any artists/designers who inspire you?
The natural world is my biggest inspiration when it comes to illustration, and this was my guiding
hand on the MSC Euribia brief.
MSC Cruises has opened sales for MSC Euribia, due to be delivered in early June 2023. The ship will spend her inaugural season in Northern Europe from the German port of Kiel, offering guests a rich panoply of incredible destinations to discover.
Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group said, “In response to the growing need to protect the ocean for future generations, we have made it our mission to equip our ships with the latest and most advanced environmental technologies and solutions, with MSC Euribia showcasing the best of them to-date.
“The contest to design the hull for our latest LNG ship was launched to help us communicate our unwavering commitment to the environment as this ship sails the world.”
NG plays a key role in the journey towards climate change mitigation and will reduce CO2 emissions by up to 25% on MSC Euribia compared to standard fuels while also virtually eliminating other air emissions.
As bio and synthetic fuels become available, MSC Euribia’s emissions will be further reduced. LNG is key to the development of low carbon solutions for shipping as emerging technologies such as fuel cells can be operated with LNG until zero emissions bio-LNG or green hydrogen become available at scale.
MSC Cruises is actively involved in several projects to develop and make these technologies viable in partnership with regulators, academia, shipyards and industry and is committed to powering at least three upcoming ships with LNG, representing a total investment exceeding €3 billion.