Tadanori Yokoo. Tejas-Bhumi (Fire that is Earth), Akasa-Bhumi (Air that is Ground), Prthivi-Manuja (Earth that is Human Beings), Ap-Bhumi (Water that is Ground), Irana-Devaloká Manuja Bhumi (Wind that is Heaven Human Beings Ground), Akasa-Devaloka (Air that is Heaven), Prthivi-Bhumi (Earth that is Ground), Ap-Devaloka (Water that is Heaven), Prthivi-Devaloka (Earth that is Heaven). Shambhala Series. 1974.
To see more of Lil Tuffy’s concert posters, check out @lil_tuffy on Instagram. For more music stories, head to @music.
When it comes to designing silkscreen concert posters, Lil Tuffy (@lil_tuffy) just goes with his gut.
“I do a lot of last-minute jobs where I’ll get no lead-in time at all. It’s like this is due in three days — and that includes printing,” says the California-based artist. “When that happens, you basically have to take a walk around the block, clear your head and then just sit down and do it.”
Tuffy currently works out of a ground-floor studio in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood, where he produces a wide range of intricate silkscreen prints. Past work includes colorful images of Devo, Wu-Tang Clan and Lana Del Rey.
Born in Detroit and raised in Cincinnati, Chicago and L.A., Tuffy (his real name is Terrance; “Lil Tuffy” was given to him by a friend years ago and has stuck ever since), started making posters more than a decade ago. At that point, he had been bartending and booking bands at small venues.
“I collected posters as a hobby,” he says. “So for my birthday party in 2002, I made a poster.”
The final piece snagged Tuffy a few design gigs. From there, he hooked up with the Firehouse, an art collective, and artist Chuck Sperry, where he learned how to screen print.
“I took printmaking classes [in college] but never screen printing classes,” he says. “So friends and I would break into the screen printing lab at night with like a case of beer and would make band T-shirts and stuff like that. That was the extent of my screen printing experience before then.”
Post-Firehouse, Tuffy set out on his own, connecting with San Francisco-area promoters and creating posters for their concerts. His work coincided with a renaissance of boutique poster making across the country — a throwback to the days when venues like the Fillmore would offer exclusive, custom images designed for local shows.
“I think when digital music started to become more prevalent and album covers took a back seat, posters really kind of filled that void,” says Tuffy. “And in the ‘90s when collecting seven inches in limited edition vinyl was like a big thing, posters kind of dovetailed right into that as well — this unique thing, only available at the show.”
Though he works directly with the promoters, in some cases Tuffy will collaborate with a few of his musician friends. Other times, he’ll hear from other artists about how much they admire his work.
“You’ll get an email thanking you,” he says. “They’re like, ‘Yeah. This is awesome. You nailed this one. I want to hang that on my wall.’”
I’m currently finishing up the semester with one more final to go (!!), but here are some designs I created for my Advanced Serigraphy class. I was inspired by my upcoming trip to Japan and from reading Memoirs of A Geisha by Arthur Golden. What started as a surface project for me to learn more about the country I will be visiting turned out to be so much more meaningful than I could’ve imagined. It’s about the process, and these are just the outcomes.
Boxes, making boxes, making boxes, making boxes…. :-)
A few pics of me silk screening and stamping boxes, and last but not least Nails looking somewhat melancholy. Nails is a very peculiar, fun character, because few of the BSV characters have his extreme range of emotion it was a nice challenge sculpting his expressions , Nails
expressions range from wicked bad-ass to big awkward
Along with the Nails kits and finished dolls I’ll be including something new, A 7x5 glossy collectible card covered in gorgeous art by Denys, On the back of the card is a short bio and character stats about Nails. If I receive a positive response I’m thinking about making them for each character doll release (We already have Mira and Spades designed) as well as making cards for Steve and Vince that would be available to anyone who had a Steve/Vice and was interested.
Today the LAST of the pre-sale Nails kits shipped, If you ordered a Nails kit during during the summer pre-sale (these were the kits with the exclusive third faceplate) and didn’t receive a tracking number please email me ( bishonenhouse (at) yahoo (dot) com ) I will begin to finally ship the finished Nails pre-sale dolls next week!
Our Patrons on Patreon got to see him six days ago but I’ll be posting the first public preview of Spades 3d print sometime tomorrow so be sure to keep an eye out for him! :-)
Margaret says about her residency at Spudnik: “I recently finished up an internship at Spudnik Press Cooperative, a community print shop in Chicago, that offers a ton of work/trade opportunities to help young artists use their space and become part of their community. During the internship, I learned about the work that the Spudnik staff members do to keep their programs running and to continue to make the space an affordable print resource for Chicago artists. I also helped to plan and promote Spudnik’s annual winter art sale and exhibition, a celebratory event for the community of artists who use Spudnik to continue their personal art practice or who run small publishing presses out of the space. During my internship, I had unlimited access to Spudnik’s print resources, which I used to make 12 screenprints that composed an illustrated calendar for 2016.
I am continuing my time at Spudnik through their winter/spring fellowship program. For the next 6 months, along with three other fellows, I will work as a monitor for Spudnik’s open studio sessions, and use Spudnik’s print resources to work on my own personal projects. For my project, I plan to make small books and to continue to explore relationships between texts and images. I also want to learn more about processes that I don’t have as much experience with like risography, letterpress, and monotype. I have really been enjoying meeting other artists through Spudnik, and I am looking forward to continuing my time there!”