Classic Posters - Interview with Casey Burns by Michael Erlewine
Classic Posters - Interview withCasey Burns by Michael Erlewine
Michael@Erlewine.netMichael Erlewine: WHEN and HOW didyou get interested in art in general, andposters in particular?Casey Burns: I've been drawing since Ican remember, since I could hold acrayon, I suppose. Later on, Idiscovered comic books, and theycontinue to be an inspiration to me.When I was thirteen, I discovered thecomics that are to this day my favorites:Will Eisner's 'The Spirit' (1940s and 50s)and the entire line of EC Comics fromthe 50s (Tales From the Crypt, WeirdScience, Frontline Combat, etc). In thepast couple of years, I have gotten allthe hardcover reprints of these, and theycontinue to inspire me. These artistsalso pointed me in the direction of theirinfluences: illustrators like Booth, NCWyeth, Coll, etc.I got turned onto poster art when I wasfifteen. I started saving all the cool flyersthat were made for shows at a clubcalled Squashpile in Asheville, NC.Soon I was in my first band, and startedmaking my own flyers. When I wassixteen I learned how to screen-printshirts, and when I got to college, Istarted screen-printing posters, takingcues from the few Frank Kozik posters Ihad seen. I found that making posterswas the perfect hybrid between my twoloves: art and music.Michael Erlewine: What kind of artinfluenced you?Casey Burns: As I said earlier, comicbook artists were and are a majorinfluence. As I got older, I discoveredGustav Klimt and Egon Schiele, andwas blown away by their figuredrawings, especially their women. I alsostarted looking more at the nouveauposters of Alphonse Mucha andToulouse Lautrec.A few years ago, I befriended GeorgePratt, who had been one of my favoritecomic artists and painters. Heintroduced me to the work of JeffreyJones, who has become a majorinfluence on my ink drawings. George,himself, is also a heavy influence.George also introduced me to the workof Eduard Thony, a German artist whodid a wealth of color illustrations for aweekly magazine called Simplicissimus.Very inspiring stuff.Michael Erlewine: What concert-postersartists influenced you?Casey Burns: Early on, Frank Kozik wasan inspiration, if for no other reason thanhe was the only silkscreen poster artist Iknew of. Later in my teens I discoveredVictor Moscoso. Current influenceswould include Dan Grzeca, NickButcher, Dale Flattum, Ron Liberti, andOcho Loco Press. My work may notshow much similarity to theirs, but theydefinitely make me want to make betterposters.Michael Erlewine: What was your firstconcert-music poster (date, venue,bands)?Casey Burns: First Xerox flyer was formy band Red No. 5, and our friendsXiola Blue, in September of 1992 at ateen center called The Hangar inHendersonville, NC. First screen printedposter was for The Martians,Bughummer, and Cobra Kahn, January28, 1996, at Local 506 in Chapel HillNC.Michael Erlewine: What are the mainvenues you have done posters for?