Shepard Fairey's inauguration posters: We the People

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I hope he remembered to secure the photo rights this time.

And is it just me, or does the HOPE shading seem a little… tired?


The newspaper dissemination is a great idea! Makes me smile knowing that hotels housing Trumpers in the DC/Va/Md metro area will have these papers slid under the doors Friday AM.


I see two of the same image?

I like his stuff, but it reminds me of being in middle school and high school where we were taught ‘if you aren’t going to blend that try a paint by numbers approach’ SF has taken this to its bezier curve extreme. Thanks Obama!

The hijab one made me smile. Enough to recall a apocryphal story:

The most perfect thing I have ever seen just happened on the replacement train bus service between Newport and Cwmbran: White man sat in front of a mother and her son. Mother was wearing a niqab.

After about five minutes of the mother talking to her son in another language the man, for whatever reason, feels the need to tell the woman ‘When you’re in the UK you should really be speaking English’.

At which point, an old woman in front of him turns around and says, ‘She’s in Wales. And she’s speaking Welsh’.


Here is the third:


As a graphic designer, I have to grudgingly admire someone who’s established such a distinctive, marketable style that he can just run photos through a few filters, grab some vector elements from his library of borders and filigree, and send off a bill that’s probably more than I make in a month.


Typically, he “drops” editions of 500 for $50 a piece every month or so. Do the math.

Ok, that’s mean. I’ll do the math. $25000 each print. ~$300,000 a year before you even begin counting all the other merchandise.


And commissions for postage stamps, album covers, t-shirts, signage… let’s just say he’s paid off that hefty legal fee a long time ago.


Yeah, but the monthly Adobe Creative Cloud fees these days That’s a killer.


Maybe because that’s not Fairey’s process at all. You may want to look deeper before you let the snark fly.


Absolutely nothing in that linked article tells me that he isn’t using Adobe tools to create the posters in this article as well as other pieces of work.

I’m sure that he does quite a bit of hands-on printmaking and painting. I don’t believe that he’s hand-drawing all of the repeating elements and bezier curves in his most well known images.


“Exit Through the Gift Shop”. is a good film showing how repeatable styles can be mass marketed by artists such as Banksy, Fairley and others.Your distaste for quick scripted reproduction for money is warranted. These guys and gals mastered the process in the world of street art.

I was in Paris recently and just happened to look up on the side of a building and see one of Space Invaders pieces. Random.


I loved that movie, and was fascinated to see the creation of Mr Brainwash, and the mystery as to whether it’s all just a put-on or… well, hard to say.

To be totally clear, I do like Shepard Fairey’s art, and have seen some wonderfully layered and textured murals and graphics from him. I admire the way he’s pushed his signature color scheme and style over the years into some really cool graphic territory. But I’ve done enough posters myself to tell when someone is re-using common elements and fonts in Illustrator over and over and over again. No, the poster below isn’t hand-painted.


He seems a bit more optimistic about the population than I am.


I need a Fairey-esque rendition of this image in order to properly respond.


How about Trump saying “OBEY”?


No thanks.


The myriad of low-skilled “Hope” poster ripoffs also attest to the style not being quite as simple to recreate as some people think. If you literally use a photo filter it ends up looking something like this, which is frankly pretty crappy:


as another graphic designer, i’m with you. it’s so hard to develop a style that’s distinctive and the fact that he came up with something that is so applicable so easily is… yeah, i’m super green with jealously, but i also admire him.


Exit Through the Gift Shop is such a work of genius. I recommend everyone watch it. It’s brilliant.