I took a little extra time to create an entry for the McCord Museum's "Houdini - The Last Show" poster contest. The concept is to create a poster design for Houdini's final tour, which ended abruptly when he suffered a burst appendix after a Montreal student unexpectedly punched him (Houdini could famously stiffen his abdominal muscles to withstand blows, but he didn't have time to prepare himself... I had always known that story, but I didn't realize that the fatal blow occurred in the very building that now houses the mcCord Museum... pretty cool!). I'm hopeful that I will land a spot in the top four, and maybe even get the grand prize... It feels like a pretty local contest (the prizes are gift certificates for local businesses, etc). We will see!
A little bit of process from this:
Sketches... I was pretty sure I wanted to do something with "Death" and Houdini bound and chained:
Working on the drawing in Photoshop (I'm trying to draw more in Photoshop rather than Manga Studio/Clip Studio, which is what I drew Titan in... I think that PS will be a more flexible platform and will allow for some more "naturalistic" drawing techniques... We will see).
Moving into Illustrator to work on the typography. The "HOUDINI" title at the top is custom made, building up from simple rectangles and circles:
Made some changes along the way, including where the headline "The Death-Defying Master Mystifier" went, which in turn made some edits to the Grim Reaper's hood:
In case you are interested, I used some nice fonts that are available for free online:
And a texture from Retro Supply
The finals, in English and French:
If I get into the finals I'll let you know, there is a kind of "People's Choice" contest for the finalists on Facebook, too. Also, if anyone would like this poster in hi-res, just let me know in the comments and I'll upload it!