Archive for the 'Posters/Poster Art/Poster Pen Sets/Paint by Number' Category

‘Poster Explosion’ Ad, 1971

Posters 1971

Posters 1971-2

My favorites:

  1. The Frank Zappa poster (he was an outspoken atheist)
  2. The young lady who’s demonstrating the scale of the trippy “wall n’ ceiling” poster
  3. The headbands
  4. The hefty price of the black light fixtures ($17.95 is about $105 in today’s money)

The ad is from a 1971 Co-Ed magazine via Phoney Fresh.

`Attila’ and ‘Attila’s Mate’ Blacklight Posters (Houston Blacklight & Poster, 1969)



George Goode is the artist, and he did a number of similar designs (viking and zulu warriors, etc.) in the late ’60s for the same company. There’s a George Goode who worked as a storyboard and layout artist from the early ’70s to the mid-’90s on nerd-canonical animated shows like Star Trek: The Animated Series, Godzilla, Dungeons & Dragons, G.I Joe: The Revenge of Cobra, and The Transformers. I don’t know for sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s the same guy.

E.T. Fun Art Set (Placo, 1982)

ET Poster Art 1982-1

ET Poster Art 1982-2

Peter Max’s National Library Week Poster, 1969

Peter Max 1969

Peter Max is an extremely influential illustrator who became a pop culture icon in the late ’60s and early ’70s, appearing on the cover of Life magazine and making TV appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. His distinctive psychedelic patterns are instantly recognizable and look sort of like Rorshach tests exploding with color and undisguised positivity.

Here, on the other hand, is the poster for Library Week, 2014.

Library 2014

Pardon me for saying so, American Library Association, but your poster sucks. Where are the books, American Library Association, or is that screwed shut lime-green rectangle supposed to be one? Where is the color and excitement and movement indicative of a commitment to reading, American Library Association? What we have here, aside from the death of inspirational illustration, is a fatalistic collapse of integrity in the face of peddling technophiles and politicians who believe, or claim to believe (so long as the checks are rolling in), that long reading is no longer “relevant” in the digital era.

Hell, I guess we get the Photoshopped culture we deserve.

(Images via Open Culture and American Library Association)

‘Come to Middle Earth’ Posters (1967, 1969)

LOTR Middle Earth 1967

The first poster is by Clifford Charles Seeley for Berkeley Bonaparte, 1967. Seeley did several rock posters in the same style, including Jefferson Airplane and Hendrix. The identification of Haight Ashbury with Middle Earth was popular among residents at the time.

The second poster (below) displays Barbara Remington art from the first authorized paperback edition of The Fellowship of the Ring. There’s also a 1968 jigsaw puzzle featuring all of the images from the trilogy side by side.

The “Come to Middle Earth” and “Frodo Lives!” memes were employed (or co-opted, depending on your point of view) during the extensive marketing campaign for Bakshi’s 1978 animated feature.

LOTR Middle 1969

Farrah Fawcett Poster Pen Set (Craft House, 1977)



Oh, Farrah. Even prepubescent boys couldn’t resist you.

More poster art (or poster pen, or poster kit, etc.) sets here.

Battlestar Galactica Poster Art Set (Craft Master, 1978)

BSG Poster Art 1978-1

BSG Poster Art 1978-2

I had this one. Note the coloring hints, especially “These pens contain more than enough ink to complete all the posters in your set.” I call bullshit.

Close Encounters of the Third Kind Poster Pen Set (Craft House, 1978)

Close Encounters Poster Pen 1978

Close Encounters Poster Pen 1978-2

Poster pen sets and poster art became popular during the latter half of the 1970s, part of a general arts and crafts surge that included everything from latch hook rugs to paintable figurines. (The oversized, “fine art” coloring books innovated by Troubador Press were an obvious inspiration.) There were poster sets before Star Wars, but Star Wars kicked the format into overdrive, making it relevant and exciting to the emerging geek generation.

(Images via eBay)




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