We enjoy TheSketchMonkey's YouTube videos tremendously. A talented visual artist, he has a way of taking ugly cars and improving them, while maintaining a factory look. His creations look like something the factory would have originally produced, had they exhibited better judgement.
Best of all, TheSketchMonkey works his Photoshop magic before our very eyes. Today, it's the much-maligned Nissan Juke going under the digital knife. In its original form, the quirky compact crossover has styling that's certainly unique, but not particularly attractive by any means.
TheSketchMonkey begins the video by breaking down the Juke's styling. The car's shape is mostly comprised of soft, round shapes, with the exception of the aggressive GT-R-inspired roofline. The front end of the car is nearly a perfect cylinder, much like a steamroller.
He likes the roofline, but dislikes the amount of sheetmetal between the top of the tyre and the top of the bonnet. Coupled with the bizarre headlights, it's certainly interesting – but it's far from beautiful.
TheSketchMonkey's design focuses on replacing the unusual headlights, flattening out the front of the car to make it match the roofline, and integrating the shape of the front fender wings into the front bumper. He also includes current Nissan styling cues to afford the car a family resemblance to its more conventionally-styled stablemates.
Crisp, aggressive lines on the bonnet help to tie the styling of the car together, while a more conventional lighting arrangement – changed at the last minute to include the round lights seen on the original – take care of one of the main criticisms of the Nissan Juke's styling.
The subtle changes to the overall shape of the front end make the Juke look much more conventional. While we admire TheSketchMonkey's effort, we have to admit that, even for him, trying to make the Juke look beautiful is more or less a lost cause. We almost – almost – prefer the original.