Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Designed To Rock | Gavin Mulloy

You may or may not recognize our latest subject of "Designed To Rock." But, if you pay attention to the local music scene you will definitely recognize the name: Gavin Mulloy, he of multiple "Poster of The Week" winning selections.

We had the opportunity to pick his brainy-brain a little bit. Make sure to check out his work linked throughout the interview.

Bona Fide Darling: How did you get started doing gig posters? Who was the first band you worked with?

Gavin Mulloy: My friends were in bands that were playing regularly and they kept having gigs. I kept seeing posters for other bands and just started doing one.

The first REAL gig poster I did was for the Cocky Americans at the Cavern. I don't feel comfortable with some of my decisions regarding the fonts now but think it came out OK. The inspiration came from a Richard Gere quote that the Guitarist in Cocky Americans had as his quote on Myspace at the time. Yes, you read that correctly, Richard Gere as muse.

BFD: What drew you to being a designer?

GM: I became a designer because my roomie at the time (early 2000's) started a website. We reviewed CD's and interviewed bands and eventually put out a monthly eZine. It was fun but at the start it looked like we made it in MS Word. We started getting interviews with people like David Cross and Flava Flav, so the site needed to look professional. So basically being ashamed of how it looked pushed me to design. Which is weird if you've seen my wardrobe.

BFD: What is typically your approach to designing a poster for a band; their sound, lyrics or just a vibe you get?

GM: I try and start from scratch each time. I sometime blare a song over and over and make that the inspiration....but I also use what I know of the people in the band to influence my design. Sometimes I just start in a style I haven't explored and adapt it around the band.

BFD: Do you ever get tired of winning the Observer's "Poster of The Week?"

GM: Yes. It's exhausting. People I don't know coming up to me in the streets. The new home security system I had installed.

No, it's great and has done nothing but bring me more business that I can handle. Plus it's always god to win something, right?

BFD: Who has been the hardest band to work with on a design?

GM: Bands have been a piece of cake. Never had a problem....except rush orders. Only had to start from scratch once.

Individual promoters can be another story. Especially when they art direct. Stick to the...whatever it is you do.

BFD: How much, if any, input do you give the band?

GM: I always ask a band for ideas when we first make contact. I'm making something for them. That always needs to be remembered. If I asked a band to write a song for me, paid them, then I'd expect their input. Most of the time after 2 posters I have an idea what they want. For bigger shows, I welcome bands ideas.

BFD: What is your design process like?

GM: Whiskey, Old yearbooks, Tears, Repeat. Then, I usually try and gestate a theme or look away from the computer. Unfortunately, I draw like Verbal Kint, so sketching is rudimentary at best and most ideas just live in my head. I really love fonts and have probably spent half my life looking for the perfect one for the design.

BFD: What other designers are you inspired by?

GM: Everyone. I mean everyone that posts on Gigposters.com. Others: Signalnoise, Abduzeedo's Daily Inspiration Post, fffound.com, some new stuff from Modern Anthem, Todd Slater, Sagemeister (more outlook than asthetic), FarmBarn, Wierhouse, Jordan Gray....more that I'm blanking on now...The best thing about the internet is the inspiration is endless. I occasionally get lost in a complete strangers Flickr or deviantArt gallery for hours.

BFD: Do you have a particular style or period of design that you are drawn to?

GM: I don't favor one style over another. Depends on the band. Really got drawn into the country poster look (which shocked the hell outta me). Just some cool Texas vibe.

BFD: What has been your favorite poster you've created so far?

GM: By far. Took me far too long to get this old image looking like I wanted it, but I like it.

BFD: How did you get hooked up with The Local Yokel Show?

GM: (plug) lokelyokelshow.com you mean? I knew Simon, Chad & Pete from the Libertine. It's really my 2nd home.
Simon figured the only way to get me out of his bars was to distract me with a podcast. My friends from Somebody's Darling went on the show and when they left, I just kinda stayed and Chad asked me keep coming on, and it just kinda worked. It's been a blast. I've gotten free concerts from Ishi, Sorta, Paul Slavens, Ryan Thomas Becker (the only man with 3 1st names I've ever trusted), The O's...and the Haiti fundraiser at the Libertine was a blast. Too bad Chad Wycleffed all the proceeds on some girl from Cedar Hill.

BFD: Is there a band you really, really, REALLY want to work with?

GM: National - TV on the Radio

Local - RTB2

Like both bands and wanna play with the letters on each. Plus, they're very visual with they're music/lyrics.


Anonymous said...

gavin is a feckin badass! great interview!

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