Squad19 Gigposter History 02: Reverend Horton Heat

Over the summer of 2003 we began to hit a good stride and were printing a few posters or prints a week. Still getting the hang of the process we were getting mixed results but we were also trying other things like printing on wood.

revHorton-paperThe Reverend Horton Heat poster we made for their First Avenue Mainroom show on September 17, 2003 inspired us to take a sheet of old plywood I had laying around from the rehab I had recently finished on my house and cutting it down to 19×12 poster size to see if printing on wood was as easy as printing on paper. The picture shows 10 but I think we actually got 12 out of the piece of wood. The wood was already old and worn but after cutting it there were jagged edges and a fresh cut look so we gave each board a light coat of primer and then tossed them back and forth down the driveway for a while to scuff and age them some more, they looked nice and the image printed just as easily on them so we were pleased with ourselves.

The design happened first with a discussion between Nate, Dave and Myself as to what visual elements should be involved. Then Dave and I drew some spot illustrations and handed them off to Nate who arranged them with the type and other design elements. The way we worked back then was sort of an Exquisite corpse style in that we’d hand stuff off to each other and then have to completely let it go. Whoever was next in the process had free reign to do with it what they pleased and the other two had to accept it until it was back in their hands at which point they could add, subtract or modify. From what I recall we were usually good with that method as it was always a pleasant surprise what happened next with any given image.

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The problem we ran into on this poster was that our screens were under-exposed and the stencil started to deteriorate as we started printing the paper edition so we only ended up getting a signed and numbered edition of 36 on paper and 12 on wood plus a small stack of posters labeled “promo” that were given to the venue. The entire edition sold out immediately. I’ve always been in the habit of saving the #19 of every poster or print I make but for some reason at some point I let my wood copy of this go and I’m still kicking myself for it. D. King Gallery has a paper copy listed for $250 so I can’t imagine what a wood copy might go for these days if there’s accuracy in that paper value. This poster ended up getting a spot in Art of Modern Rock: The Poster Explosion by Paul Grushkin,‎ and Dennis King which was a nice feather in our cap. It’s an epic coffee table book featuring hundreds of amazing posters and artists so we were very honored to be included in that publication.

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