Monday, January 19, 2009


As we all know, Shepard Fairey's iconic Obama poster has been a huge part of the Obama phenomenon. An independent act of art, not commissioned by Obama or his campaign, but a simple, powerful tribute to the hope the new leader would bring.

The Fairey poster's power came from, in my opinion, three elements:
1) The simplified picture of Obama looking forward (and slightly upwards) to the future
2) The Colour scheme - red, blue, light blue, and cream/white
3) The powerful, simple four-letter message on the bottom: HOPE

Actually, there are four versions of the poster that I'm aware of: "HOPE", "CHANGE", "PROGRESS", and "OBAMA". "HOPE" has proven to be, by far, the most popular, neatly summarizing in four little letters the aspirations of a generation.

On Jan. 20th, not only will Obama rise to the occasion in his inaguration, but Fairey's iconic Obama poster will become part of the permanent collection at the American National Portrait Gallery. As far as a portrait in the US goes, that's pretty much as good as it gets. And oh yeah, if you want a limited edition copy of an original Fairey print from ebay, be prepared to empty your wallet a little (on a lighter note high quality knock-offs are, as always, going for much cheaper).

That said, you can get in on making your own iconic Obama image here, at Obamicon, "a bit of post-election fun by Paste magazine." It works better with some pictures than others, but give it a shot. If you ever become president (or Prime Minister) you should definitely have a picture of you with a poster totally calling it. Hey, we can all hope, can't we?


  1. Sweet, I think Rex Murphy came out the best. There's something sci-fi about Graham's.