Saturday, December 14, 2013

Auction Poster

    It occurred to me recently that I haven't posted any work other than the comics in weeks.  Well, I'm here to remedy that.  Every other year, the Prichard Art Gallery does a benefit auction.  I was asked if I would be interested in creating the poster for said auction.  The Prichard Gallery is a great venue for all sorts of creative and educational endeavors, so I was more than happy to oblige.

As always, I started by working up a few concepts:

This first one was based on the idea that the gallery takes you places.  In this concept, I explore that idea in a semi-literal way, with the gallery as an actual vessel in which you might travel to interesting places.

Concept number two is half homage and half parody.  It's a nod to the Norman Rockwell illustration of a man standing in front of a Jackson Pollack painting.  In this concept, I was thinking about the fact that the world around the gallery changes with time, as does the art being displayed by the gallery.  But the function of the gallery remains constant.  Plus, robots are cool.

The third concept is mostly about the "behind the scenes" aspects of the gallery.  I've always heard that the best frame for a piece of art is the one you don't notice.  I think the gallery is similar in that respect.  You're supposed to notice the art, not the space.  And because their job is to not be noticed, I think it can be easy to forget just how hard it can be to run and maintain a gallery as well as the Prichard does.

Concept number four: Continuing with the exploration theme, this one is an attempt to highlight the fact that the gallery and the art contained therein are a kind of portal or doorway to an almost limitless world.  Also, it's a double entendre with the whole "space" thing.  It's the only one in color because I wanted to be able to depict the stars.

Finally, this is the "they'll never go for this one" concept.  It features a rough caricature of the gallery's director dressed as Willy Wonka.  They didn't go for it.

They actually ended up choosing the first concept, which is great because that's the concept I felt was the strongest of the set.  I would have been happy proceeding with any of the concepts (I've learned over the years not to present any concepts I wouldn't want to bring to fruition), but the ship concept was the one I was most excited about.

With the concept chosen, the next step was draw the final layout:

You might be asking, "Why not just use the concept sketch?"  Well, first, the concept sketches are just a rough way to convey the idea.  They're done fairly quickly, without the attention to detail and craft that the actual layout sketch deserves.  They're functional, but not usually pretty.  Secondly, I'm a serious glutton for punishment, and why do less work when I can do more?

This version is a lot cleaner and I relied heavily on reference images to draw the ship.  Also, the ship is facing the opposite direction, which was a good suggestion made by the gallery director.

With the layout sketch complete, all that was left was to add a few minor details here and there.  You know: outlines, color, shading, depth...the little stuff:

My goal with this poster was to create something that would attract attention for the event and for the gallery.  I'm extremely happy with the way this turned out.  It was a lot of hard work.  Hopefully it will help the event succeed.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think this is beautiful, Noah. It reminds me of both Chris Van Allsburg and Hayao Miyazaki. It's mysteriously inviting.