This past February I received an email from Volcom Entertainment asking if I wanted to do some artwork for the upcoming Turbonegro spring tour. I didn't even have to think about this one. I get jazzed over any gig that involves a band or musician, especially when it's a band or musician I genuinely like. The original ask was for a tour poster and a 7" vinyl sleeve with artwork repurposed from the poster. These were the design directions, "...I asked them for some art direction and all I got was a couple stills from Gimme Shelter / Altamont concert movie... Like the part where one of the Hell’s Angels is freaking on acid or something and doing a weird dance and the image of Sonny Barger with the wolf head fur hat... I don’t really have a lot to build off of, so I’d say do your worst."
This is the clip they were referring to, I think:
I decided to interpret the guy with the bad acid trip as a guy that is literally tearing himself apart.
Using that as a starting point, I started on some rough, rough sketches.
Followed by very loose color comps.
I wanted to incorporate the band members in a monstrous way, as if the viewer of the poster was experiencing the same acid trip as the biker that is ripping himself apart. The characters were illustrated with ink and then scanned into my computer where I colored them in Photoshop.
Tony Sylvester a.k.a The Duke of Nothing
Knut Schreiner a.k.a. Euroboy
Thomas Seltzer a.k.a. Happy-Tom
Rune Grønn a.k.a. Rune Rebellion
Tommy Akerholdt a.k.a. Tommy Manboy
After my viewing of the band members I decided to add The Duke of Nothings tattoos to the woman in the middle ground because his face was obstructed by her fox skin hat. A lot of these tattoo details got lost when I added the type towards the end.
When it came to the biker ripping himself apart, I referred to autopsy photos as well as photos of latex being pulled, Freddy Krueger, cheese stretching, etc. I also went ahead and just used myself as the model for the biker.
With all the characters in place, this is how the finished poster looked without type.
I sent this off to Volcom and received a positive response, which is always a relief to an illustrator. With the poster out of the way, I repurposed the artwork for the Vans 7" vinyl giveaway, which you can read about here: http://www.vans.com/microsites/turbonegro/
The Vans micro site also used my artwork to promote the 7" vinyl giveaway.
With all this complete, I thought I was done with the project. I received an email that the Turbojugend wanted to print a limited run of t-shirts for the tour, which I was all for. At this point, the more the art is out there, the better.
These shirts are actually available at the Turbojugend shop now. So pick one up along with some of the other killer merch they have there.
This was a pretty smooth project over all. Everyone I worked with was great and I wouldn't mind working with any of them again. I went to the Turbonegro show at The El Rey in Los Angeles and was blown away by the performance. Seeing people wearing the shirt I designed was an added bonus.
With that said, I'd like to thank Kurt from Volcom Entertainment, the people associated with the Vans 7" giveaway, Chuck "Destruction" Maple from the Turbojugend who was responsible for the shirt, and the fans for their positive reaction to the illustration. And of course, a BIG thanks to Turbonegro.
(Yep, that's the band signing my merch. I swiped this photo from Volcom Entertainment.)