How to Make a Gig Poster That’s Undeniably Awesome

Posted on Monday, July 11th, 2016 by

While cover art only comes once an album, a gig poster is a way that a band can visually explore their music every time they play a show. And there really is a lot to be said about a great gig poster. If they connect with music lovers, they can fill seats and even become cult artwork for college dorms everywhere.

Still it can be hard to translate music into images, so we’re going to break down this art form into six keys that might help you get started. To make things simpler, we’re going to do this on mobile devices and skip the crayons and paint tubes, because we know that we can get equally awesome results. The PicsArt photo editor fits the bill for the task here, because this app has a deep and flexible editor as well as a Drawing Tool, which is a great combo for any artistic undertaking. Here are six key tips to cracking the art of the gig poster.

1. Layering Your Theme

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.47.24 AMEvery band has a personality, so build a unifying theme in every layer. Double Exposures are a great way to combine images and backgrounds, and effects can help define the energy of each element, whether it’s a vintage­style filter or a more transformative effect that makes an image look hand­painted with watercolors. PicsArt has an extensive effects library, and lets you control the blending mode of each photo or piece of clipart that you add in.

2. Typography Is Critical

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.50.35 AMMore than in any other project, the font that you use here is super, incredibly, outrageously important! Your band name is your flag, and your font is almost more important than the name. A lot of names could work for different styles of music, but fonts speak to specific feelings. Hippy bubble letters, angry slashing letters, cool minimalism… do not underthink your font.

3. Listen While You Make

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.51.53 AMOne of the best ways to link your artwork to the vibe of the band is to simply make sure that you are listening to the music while you create. Creating something independently of the music is fine, but it’s much easier to feel your way into your project if you can hear the thudding drums and jangling guitars. That energy will make its way into the final results.

4. Kidnap Their Attention

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.53.24 AMA gig poster is an advert, and that means that you want to grab attention from the distractions of the street. Nothing jumps out at us faster than the color itself, so start with strong colors; neon is near impossible to ignore for example. Beyond that, a strong image is key. You don’t need complexity or detail, a hard hitting bonkers idea will do. Who can walk by a bulldog’s jowls dangling over a collared shirt? Cutting and pasting from photos in the app makes this as easy as cake.

5. Texture

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.55.00 AMAnother basic element to any poster’s feeling is something that underlies the entire poster itself — the texture! You can actually play with various types of textures without buying sheets of expensive paper. PicsArt has texture masks that will give your poster the tactile look of everything from newspaper to a brick wall.

6. Would You Hang it On Your Wall

Screen shot 2016-07-06 at 10.56.10 AMThe final test of any poster is the simplest, but it’s critical that you keep this in mind. Ask yourself, “would I hang this poster on my wall?” Well… wouldyou? If it doesn’t belong on your wall, then you’re not connecting to it and that means other people probably won’t either. Your poster should look so good that even people who have never heard the band will want it hanging over their beds.

Are feeling the groove yet? Sink yourself into a gig poster project and see if you can strike a winning chord. Download the PicsArt app for free on Android, iOS or Windows Phone to give it a go!

This post was provided by PicsArt, a mobile photo editing app that provides people with a canvas for creating, collaborating, and exploring. With a full creative suite for photo editing, PicsArt makes it easy to create beautiful images, no matter where you are.

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