NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN poster

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Here’s a new poster for our pals at the Prince Charles Cinema over in London for their screening of one of my favorite modern movies by the mighty Coen Brothers: NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN. The movie screens on July 24.

I knowingly approached this poster differently than my previous ones. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN is a unique movie on it’s own … there’s no music, the main characters though tied tightly by story never really meet. It’s brutal yet quite funny in parts, all wrapped in a beautiful landscape. It’s a film you need to watch several times to truly appreciate it. So I wanted this poster to have a light touch, something serene that takes cues from one of my favorite scenes near the beginning. A merging of the old west with today’s violent reality.

I started off designing a pretty standard poster, but quickly changed gears. This is also my first landscape movie poster, which took me way out of my comfort zone but ultimately was best for the concept. Here are some ridiculous sketches and conceptual. Things came together rather quickly.

I am working with Mystery Box and the Prince Charles Cinema in order to bring this poster to life through some nice screenprints. Watch this space for details as they become available.

MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE poster

Here is the first poster created for the Prince Charles Cinema in London. One of my favorite childhood movies, MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE will be playing at the cinema this coming Monday so be sure to check their schedule to see this sucker on the big screen. It’s on a double-bill with CYBORG too. Wish I could be there.

I had a great time on this one, creating something more stripped down and stylized as compared the the “likeness heavy” posters I’ve been doing. The influence for this one came right from early STAR WARS posters, depicting a heavily silhouetted character. Maybe channeling a bit of Olly Moss in there too.  I wanted He-man to resemble Dolph Lundgren from the live-action film, but posed exactly like the He-man from the cartoon. I also wanted Skeletor to double as Castle Grayskull in the background, again a reference to the cartoon. I love the live-action film but it really missed a few of those nice cartoon cues.

Since the show at the PCC is in 3 days, we’re as yet unsure about the printing of this one. But I assure you we are on the case to get things sorted out. I’d love to have a screenprinted copy of this one and already have some variant ideas in the works.

“By the power of Grayskull!”

Posters by Laurent Durieux

I’ve been seeing the work of Laurent Durieux popping up quite often over the last while and every time it stops me in my tracks. Not only does he typically design posters based around content that I’m into (Snoopy, big robots, etc), but just look at the technical skill put into these things.

Durieux has an incredible ability to shade his drawings in a way that gives a sense of volume. Gives the illusion of 3-dimensional space even though he’s using a limited palette. No effects or blurs, just hard shading. His cross-hatching and line-shade skill is off the charts, have no idea how he does this stuff with such precision. And he can do type work.

Check out Laurent Durieux’s Flickr for more of his work.

Signalnoise Biker sticker + shirt

Original drawing.

Leather jacket mock-up.

Over the last little while I feel like I’ve been mired in paperwork and administrative stuff. Necessary evil I understand, but I’m a creative guy and my interests will always lie in making things. The craft of it all. So when I’m forced to deal with taxes and forms and whatever else that takes away from my creating, it puts me in a quiet and pretty foul mood. Just want to make things, man.

That said, I wanted to create something a bit rebellious this week. Call it therapy or whatever, but a lot of times my state of mind translates almost directly into my work. Couple that with getting into SONS OF ANARCHY recently and we end up with the Signalnoise Biker design. I wanted this one to look like it was drawn by someone in an MC, then photocopied over the years. Degraded. Last thing I wanted was something “slick” for this one, y’know? A few people said it looked like Skeletor, which is fine. Was going for a laughing Reaper. Very inspired by the SOA patch.

I’ll be arranging a sticker and t-shirt pressing this week. Watch for this one in the Signalnoise Store soon.

E3C May Meet-up poster

I designed a little poster for this month’s E3C Meet-up (Twitter), the monthly gathering of creative people in Halifax. I started this event last year, then known as the Halifax Design Meet until it was taken over by my friends Alison Knott and Peter Greathead to become E3C.

This month’s gathering is on Thursday, May 10 at the Foggy Goggle on Argyle Street. Hit the Facebook Event for more.

THE VILLAIN

Here is my new portrait piece, THE VILLAIN. If you’re new to these ones, I tend to do portraits in between full posters as a form of practice as I continue to explore this form of print design. Trying to sharpen my skills.

As with all my stuff lately, this is 100% vector. No brushes, or plugins, or LiveTrace or fancy “time-saving” tools either. Just hardcore bezier point scrutiny through lots of hours. Nuts and bolts stuff. If you want it to look right you have to get right in there and do it yourself. Really trying to simplify things too.

I wanted the colour palette to hinge on THE DARK KNIGHT film, but not exactly. This one is much grimmer than my previous portraits: THE SMUGGLER and THE SCIENTIST.

EDIT: This is the second version of THE VILLAIN. I did further work on it this weekend to mend some issues.

Aaron and I

Here’s a quick one, a lost photo taken by my pal Chris Toms on the final day of FITC Toronto 2012. Dartmouth vs. Portland. Me and that Aaron Draplin. Having a good time on the streets of Toronto.

Look at that death grip, man. Draplin broke 2 of my ribs in this shot.

Signalnoise poster for THE THING

A couple of early digital concept studies.

Sketch of the alien gore on tracing paper. Ink and blue lead.

Here’s a poster for my favourite movie, John Carpenter’s masterpiece: THE THING.

I started this design hot on the heels of completing the BLADE RUNNER poster. I’m continuously learning new tricks and processes as I go, so I wanted to really dial in on the style I explored in BLADE RUNNER and simplify it. Really concentrate on the shapes that make up the highlights and shadows. The goal was to reduce the overall number of points, but really make them count. Smooth curves.

The over-arcing concept was to depict the alien taking human form, so I knew early on I needed some kind of weird abstract alien gore in there which proved to be the toughest challenge. I sought reference in the film, but I didn’t want hands, or tentacles, or a spider-head. I wanted a mess of scary “whatever”. I had to draw it all from the ground up (pencil and paper, kids) and on the third attempt it finally fell into place. From there it hit the scanner to be re-built in Illustrator.

Like my BLADE RUNNER poster, this is 100% vector. Not a hint of Photoshop in there. I see this and the BLADE RUNNER poster as kind of companion pieces since I did them both back to back with similar methodologies.

But again, it was all about atmosphere. I wanted this poster to feel like the movie. That was priority 1.