Dylan & Dylan

In the last 3 years my Dad retired, beat cancer, and started playing blues harmonica in several bands. It’s been a lifelong hobby of his but now he’s pursuing it semi-professionally. He and 2 friends put together a show called Dylan and Dylan, combining the music and poetry of Bob Dylan and Dylan Thomas. It’s played to several sold out performances in their community of Monterey, California, and they are gearing up for more performances.
Based on a live recordings, I created an LP design for a ‘live’ album, with an eye towards adapting it to be a poster for their upcoming performance. Visually, I took cues from the way both Dylans bypassed established genre tropes in favor of strengthening their idiosyncratic voices with a gonzo, almost Dionysian, approach to their craft. To that end I decided to embrace my own voice and lean heavily on my own personal style of collage art. At the same time, I made it a point to really push myself with editing in hopes of creating something even a fraction as timeless and iconic as the poetry that inspired it.

The illuminated D in the first Dylan is from a Welsh manuscript (Dylan Thomas’s country of origin) while the other typefaces on the front are Americana letterforms from the 40s and 50s, scanned from vintage advertising source books. It’s what would have dominated the look of advertising in the world that Dylan Thomas and Bob Dylan inhabited. I kept the font juxtapositions intentionally bold, as that’s not only my personal inclination but also what I believe both Dylan’s would have done, had they been graphic designers.

The image on the back is a composite of 2 places: Dylan Thomas’s home in Swansea, Wales, and the Chelsea Hotel in New York City – where Dylan Thomas died and where Bob Dylan wrote some of his best work, years later.