The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater

The gig posters of artist Todd Slater go beyond simple advertisements for a night of rock and roll. The band name is there. The date and location. The facts that make up the event, but Slater bypasses the ordinary and creates an artifact that shines brighter than the memory of guitar and song.

.

Slater’s dedication to his role as illustrator is devout. This is his craft, his trade — and his commitment and focus is monk-like. Each concert is a chance to link the band and its music to the specific plot of Earth where they are performing. His gig posters are totemic in nature — visualizing the spirit-beast of each band, each club and location. His posters mark the kinship between music, place, and audience.

 

Widespread Panic gig poster by Todd Slater

Widespread Panic gig poster by Todd Slater

Slater’s book released by the Flood Gallery, ‘The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater’ is both textbook and culmination of a young career. The book unfolds chronologically, starting in 2004 with a gig poster for a performance at the Gypsy Ballroom by punk legends Bad Religion. The poster is made up of a red and black collage design of found images. War and modern soldiering pulled together with a mishmash of textures. To look at the last page, Slater’s poster for a Widespread Panic concert in South Carolina in 2016 is to witness an entirely different artist.

 

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

‘The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater’ Released by The Flood Gallery

 

Bad Religion at the Gypsy Ballroom 2004 by Todd Slater

Bad Religion at the Gypsy Ballroom 2004 by Todd Slater

Widespread Panic gig poster from 2015 by Todd Slater

Widespread Panic gig poster from 2015 by Todd Slater

 

A poster designed by Todd Slater has a distinct voice, first there is Slater’s own born of concept both insight and patience. Second, the tone of the band itself and finally there is venue and date. For all to come together, is when Slater is in full roar. In a 2014 interview, Slater spoke of his poster for the Avett Brothers gig in Burlington, Vermont, stating  —

“The Avett Brothers factor into the Vermont print more on a stylistic level. The illustration is both ornate and antique, which I felt matched their feel. I also thought that because the band is made up of two brothers, that I’d draw some parallel to the fighting that can occur over a woman with the two bears flanking the image left and right.”

 

The Avett Brothers in Vermont gig poster by Todd Slater

The Avett Brothers in Vermont gig poster by Todd Slater

In 2004 when his first print was created, Slater was 24 years-old, enthusiastic and just developing his design sense. By 2015, Slater was just as enthusiastic but his artistic voice was now controlled. That collage treatment had grown from make-shift design to a full mastery of composition and color – by the time the book reaches Slater’s Avett Brothers’ Vermont date, there is not a line out of place. Each stroke is considered. Each element necessary. Each bound heavy with concept and mood.

When the book closes on over a decade of Todd Slater’s work, another begins.

 

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

‘The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater’ Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery

'The Rock Poster Art of Todd Slater' Released by The Flood Gallery


free-gift-2016_V5Subscribe to HOW Magazine today and you’ll receive an exclusive digital download The Best of International Design Annual. Enjoy this collection of the top winners from the 2016 and 2015 International Design Awards.

COMMENT