An Ode to the Poster


Strange that we totally missed this post on Crit the other day, given that this writer is a big music nut and an even bigger poster nut. The piece is called “The Art of Concert Posters” and is all about having the gig poster be a young person’s entrance into wanting to learn about design. The “Hey, someone made this. I wonder who?” connection that has likely spawned a million working designers (we can name at least fifteen designer friends who this applies to). So it’s a sweet little age-of-innocent-wonder piece, but it’s also a nice tribute to how important, besides just getting people to come to shows, the poster industry is. Here’s some:

What surprised me so much about finding this collection of posters is that for the first time in awhile I got excited about design again. Yes, anyone can see these things online. There are at least five sites dedicated to the art of concert posters with more popping up each day to show off work or sell that limited edition Henry Rollins poster by Emek for $300 (have you seen it? Totally worth it…). You can go to the designer’s web page and if he/she are generous, you can download a 3 x 5 inch, 72 dpi version for the background of your computer. But none of that compares to seeing it live. The colors are always more vibrant, you can see more detail, the paper has a texture you cannot see or feel on screen, and the ink has a distinct smell to it that makes your eye open in glee not unlike a wine connoisseur with a vintage wine freshly popped.

And if you’re extra interested in this sort of thing, he’s a couple of mini-documentaries we made at the regular, full-time gig: Aesthetic Apparatus and The Bird Machine.