Jay Ryan is your favourite band’s favourite poster artist. Since his start in the 90s, Jay’s art style has been mimic’d by the best of the best. Jay discusses the early days of poster design, screen printing, gigposters.com, flatstock, handmade lettering, working for his favourite bands, and a ton more. When it comes to music poster design there is no one more knowledgable or experienced than Jay Ryan – he’s also incredibly funny and we had an amazing time talking shop with him. 


To listen, select your favourite podcast platform from the links on the right.

Follow along with the SHOW NOTES below to see images of the projects discussed in this episode.


0:53 – Episode 11: Listener Q&A info

3:00 – Host Jud Haynes’ portfolio website and Instagram

5:50 – Skokie, Illinois – home of The Bird Machine, Jay’s studio

6:30 – University of Illinois

7:20 – Steve Walters from Screwball Press

7:45 – Jay playing with Hubcap (left) and Dianogagh (really wish I’d asked him about that bass)

8:00 – Jay’s first poster illustration – 1995

9:10 – Jay at Screwball Press – 1998

16:15 – Moments of action in Jay’s posters

16:15 – The Far Side comics by Gary Larson

17:45 – Examples of 90s concert poster design

19:10 –

19:50 –

20:30 – Jay’s use of animals in place of people

21:00 – Jud’s Winnipeg Folk Fest posters with teal people

27:50 – Jay’s original drawings are done by hand, then colours added in photoshop

29:10 – Jay demonstrating hand cutting rubylith photo-stencil to make separations for screen printing (how Jay cut layers in the first decade of his printing process)

33:16 – Examples of Jay’s hand lettering

35:00 – Examples of Horst Jassen hand lettering

39:00 – A bunch of Jay’s posters for sale on eBay

40:30 – A few records Jay designed (from the more than 70 he has made to date)

41:18 – A couple reissues Jay was tasked to reinterpret original designs to make new

43:50 – “Just Like Being There” – poster culture documentary – Trailer

46:30 – Gigposters.com was a site created by Clayton Hayes to showcase his collection of posters and quickly became the main global source and meeting spot for posters artists from all corners of the planet. For many years it was the central hub of all things to do with this business. Then one day it went away, never to return.

47:45 – Jay’s poster promoting the very first Flatstock (2002)

50:00 – Flatstock has grown to be a global event – here’s a photo from the event in Austin (SXSW)

Jay’s Flatstock booth

52:40 – Kittens in a tree print Jud owns (probably not the poster Jay was referencing on the show however, we’re pretty sure these aren’t even kittens)

53:15 – Alamo Draft House movie posters

55:30 – example of a couple MONDO posters (not illustrated by Jay). There are hundreds of amazing MONDO posters out in the world.

58:00 – Jud’s favourite piece of his own work

59:00 – One of Jay’s favourite posters

103:00 – Learn more about Jay Ryan and The Bird Machine:

On instagram @thebirdmachine
On Facebook @actualbirdmachine

105:00 – WIN THIS PRINT!

Send along a question for Jay or Jud and you’ll be entered in a draw for this print called “Here Comes A Riff”. Drawn, hand printed, signed and numbered by Jay Ryan. Folks who follow @artdesignmusicpodcast on either Facebook or Instagram are also entered in the draw (and if you follow both, then you have two chances at the draw). Contest is open to anyone in the world, we’ll ship it to you if you win.

105:45 – Learn more about Loel Campbell (the beat maker for our podcast

On instagram @loelcampbell
Loel’s band Wintersleep
Wintersleep instagram

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