Charles Bradley Gig Poster - Student Work


Create a poster to advertise an upcoming concert in the Sacramento area (not a real concert) for the singer, Charles Bradley. The poster should feel true to the artist, be compelling, and convey the following information: the name of the band, the date(s) of the concert, the location, the time of the show, website information, producer information, and age restrictions.


I didn't know Charles Bradley before starting this poster. so I started the project by researching the artist. I listened to his music, watched videos on YouTube and read his history. He has a fascinating story and I really enjoyed his voice. He has a soulful voice that is very reminiscent of James Brown but he brings his own personality to the music.
Once I had a a better understanding (and appreciation) of his music, I researched the styles, designs, and colors of soul and funk music from the 1960's and 1970's and pinned a number of images, color palettes, and typefaces to Pinterest for reference.
Next, I collected a number of images of Charles Bradley himself to have as reference.
I then went back to my trusty paper and pencil and began sketching out concepts for the poster. I wanted a design that was an homage to the music that Charles Bradley sings. I also wanted to find a way to intentionally lead the audience's eye throughout the poster and create a naturally flowing hierarchy.
I wanted the main focus of the poster to be an enticing image of Bradley but I wanted to do something a bit different than merely doing a photo treatment. So I found a wonderful photograph of Bradley and created a stylized drawing in Illustrator. I used the pencil tool and a Wacom tablet to draw the image. I then began playing around with my color palette, filling different portions of the drawing to see how what kind of life it could give the drawing.
After I was happy with the drawing, I set to work laying out the text using my concept art as the basis. The layout came together quite quickly as I had already selected the typefaces I wanted to use. I then played again with the color combinations until I felt the flow of the piece worked well, guiding the viewer throughout the poster.