Tuesday, July 29, 2014

2014 "Give Me Liberty" Tour Poster
I was approached by Justin of the Zilis to do a poster for their upcoming tour. I was stoked that they wanted to go with the hand drawn style and even more stoked when they brought up the idea of a bald eagle. I love birds of prey. I also love American pop art, so I was excited to get going! I sketched out the eagle and the lettering for "the Zilis" (I used Rush's 2112 album cover as inspiration.) 
And then... major creative block. I just couldn't get myself to put the pen to paper. I hit a wall, and couldn't climb out of it. I would look at the sketch, and then look at the ink and I just couldn't produce. It was horrifying. 
Finally, I just decided not to think about it for a few days. I went out to see some shows, I got drunk, I danced, I laughed and completely put it out of my mind. I went back to it without any expectation. Even as I worked, I didn't think I liked it. I wasn't happy with it, but I kept going anyway. I finished it. I walked away and didn't look at it for two days. Then I came back to it and realized that it was just all in my head. It was a good drawing! The letters are cool, the position of the eagle is cool.... I scanned it, added the dates and the stars, tweaked some of the colours and then I loved it. 
So... lesson to be learned from this: When negative thoughts start eating away at your brain, just walk away. Go do something that inspires you, come back and don't try. Just do. There is no try. There is no spoon. Your work is probably better than you think! Just stop thinking. Draw (or paint, play, sing, dance) like you're a kid again. Do it for the love of it, and nothing else. Even if it's crap, you will get the feeling back and that's what it's all about. That's where good work comes from. Not from overanalyzing. 
Anyway! Enough of that rant. You want to hear about the Zilis, right? Well, if you think young folks these days don't know what good music is, the Zilis are here to prove you wrong!! These guys are tight, talented and their sound is classic. And if you want to support young musicians who are true to the roots of rock n roll, you should totally come out for the tour kick off show at This Ain't Hollywood on August 8th! I will be there, so come say hi and have a beer with me!! 

Saturday, June 7, 2014

"Getting To Work"

Ink on Paper

I like the expression "Getting to work" because it means hunkering down and making progress with a particular goal in mind. But you can also look at it to mean you are receiving an opportunity. "I'm getting to perform live" or "I'm getting to meet my idol" ... I'm getting to work on this cool poster. Honestly, the next two days are going to be spent working outside of the home, so I won't be getting to work until Monday. But that's okay! Mondays seem to be a good day for drawing. And I recently transformed my studio into a space that is a lot more functional and organized. So!! By Tuesday June 17, I should be posting the finished piece. This is me, setting goals. Sometimes working at home is really tough. Being my own boss is not as easy as I thought. I guess this is what my teachers meant about applying myself! 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Friday May 30th
The Cadillac Lounge

If you're familiar with the my posters, or the Hamilton music scene, or if you are a fan of Ontario Rockabilly, you're probably familiar with the hard-working Hellbent Rockers! These boys sure know how to put on a party, and this show is sure to knock your socks off! So be sure to make your way down to The Cadillac Lounge on May 30!! Be there, or be square!!! 

Saturday, May 3, 2014

DJ MARK (Discography) 

This one is a quick turn around, happening THIS Monday!! But it's such a unique and exciting  event, I wanted to share!
Mex-I-Can is a well known, long-established Mexican restaurant on James St. North, right here in Hamilton. The owners are very friendly, and the food is amazing. I suggest the burrito supreme (but share it, cuz it's freakin' enormous!) But more than anything, they have the best damn Mojito's I've ever tasted! MMmmmmm So good!
I'm not familiar with Mariachi Fuego, but I think it should make this event feel very authentic and probably prompt a few shots of Tequila!! You know I love my Tequila! 
Along with this amazing food and music, there will be beer tasting with the now-trending import beer, Pistonhead Kustom Lager
The fun doesn't stop there! After eats and treats, the whole crew will spill out onto the streets for a good old-fashioned pub crawl to some of Hamilton's hottest hang outs. Finally arriving at the notorious This Ain't Hollywood for a full-on dj set by Discography's DJ Mark (Dr. Disc)!! 
How's that for a Monday night party??? 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

w/Chris Houston
Friday May 23, 2014
This Ain't Hollywood

John Otway rose to cult status through his stage antics and self-depreciating sense of humour. 
Honestly, the best way I can put this.... If you're not familiar with the name (and most aren't), I suggest just taking a glimpse of this trailer for a movie about Otways ....interesting music career! 

And who else could possibly fit this bill better than Chris Houston?!! He's such a character and I think the world might wiggle a bit out of it's axis when these two are in the same room! 

True North Records
Illustration and hand crafted font: Ink on paper. Digital background. 

Receiving a commission from Canada's oldest Indie label, True North Records, has definitely been the highlight of 2014. Not only was it an honour to be recognized by such an amazing company, they were very kind, encouraging and supportive. I can honestly say that it challenged and strengthened me, in all the best possible ways. I could blather on for hours about how thrilled I am that I had this opportunity, but instead I will do my job and promote the artist for whom the poster was created!!! And it's a good one! 

Matt Andersen is a blues guitarist and singer-songwriter from Perth-Andover, New Brunswick. Aside from several awards (such as several East Coast Music Awards, Maple Blues Award & Euro Blues Award) He is also the first Canadian winner of Memphis, Tennessee's Int'l Blues Challenge! Andersen's new album, "Weightless" is available on his website, where you can also check to see when he's playing near you! 

Feeling grateful! 

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Hell Bent Trio
April 26th, 2014

Ian Andrews was born in Guelph, but moved to Hamilton in 2012 and started really getting into the Blues scene. "It's going great!" says Andrews. "My act is just over a year and a half old and I've already had the pleasure of playing with some incredible (talent)" Aside from his blues/rock act, Andrews has been collaborating with some other musicians to make a recording of some more abstract music. Andrews is influenced by all kinds of music and sounds, siting Johnny Winter, The Three Kings (Al, Freddie & B.B.) as well as many local acts. Fondly recalling the first time he heard King Biscuit Boy & Crowbar, Andrews says "...that gave me a fever!"

Also on this bill is The Hell Bent Trio. Sound familiar? Probably because you're thinking of The HellBent Rockers, which is the full version of this band. When Bill isn't available to sing, Nicoloff steps up to the mic, and the show goes on... but just as a trio! So you know you can expect a great show, just a bit stripped down! 

Ian Andrews photograph by: Alison Novak. You can check out Alisons work at:  alisonnovak.com