top ten by Braulio Amado

Bráulio Amado's Design Syllabus

reading time 4 minutes

On Tuesday, Bráulio Amado talked to us about how he designs his electrifying concert posters (spoiler alert: he approaches his work a bit like pictionary). For the sake of public interest, we couldn’t let him leave before he told us what graphic artists had most inspired his eclectic styles. The following ten designers, art directors, and illustrators have had a decisive impact on Bráulio’s stellar practice. We hope they can do the same for you.

Manuel Donada

More than any other person, Manuel is the reason I’m a designer. When I met him, he seemed like the coolest guy ever: he had his own design style, he played in a weird band, and he had a record label, for which he designed all the covers and posters. He was always sketching something in his sketchbook, even if someone was looking at him funny — just knocking out these weird collages, these crazy works of art. I love the energy of everything he does, the way he mixes techniques: some of it is cartoonish, then there’s a burst of punk, then something more quaint. He taught me everything I needed to know and made being a designer seem a real and cool possibility.

David Rudnick

I think David is one of the best living designers. He creates his own typefaces and develops this futuristic and incredibly unique visual language. I have no idea how he does it, which only adds to the excitement. His great sense of humor, his ironic sensibility, shines through all of his work. I particularly love the posters he does for the parties he organizes. The blurbs on them are hillarious, as is his twitter account.

Paula Scher

It’s quite obvious how much her work has influenced me, don’t you think?  It all has so much energy that you forget that it’s not *actually* moving. The way she uses typography kind-of changed everything. Instead of using this clean and quiet typography, she started blowing it up. She made the letters move and dance. For me, she’s simply one of the best designers ever. You can see her love for the craft in everything she does.

Tracy Ma

Tracy was my boss at Bloomberg Businessweek (under Richard Turley and then side-by-side with Rob Vargas) and always brought the most surprising, crazy-looking ideas to the table. I’m always incredibly surprised by how she actually gets any of them printed. Her work is very conceptual but there’s a supersmart idea at the center of every one. Watching her work fills me with suspense.

Barney Bubbles

He is one of my all-time favorite designers. All his work is beautiful and I look at his book regularly for inspiration. He did the artwork for some of the best the punk and new wave bands in the UK during the late 70s and early 80s. He helped give that era its visual identity. He had a very specific language but it was also very simple. Other designers were doing similar stuff, but he was just always a bit better, a bit more special.


I guess we can call them visual artists, too, but really they’re a boyband. They are a group of young kids living in a house in LA, producing their own music, recording their own videos, designing their own amazing covers and merchandise. It’s all one cohesive project. I really love the idea of this creative family of young people doing everything on their own. I find it very inspiring.

Zach Hobbs

He is 6’8″ and has been huge inspiration to me for over 10 years. I found his work on a (now defunct) website called gigposters, and he has been one of my favorites ever since. I adore his hand-drawn typography, his collages with a layer of paint on top, and the bursts of colors. He has a full-time job now but still posts a lot of awesome drawings on instagram. Still, it makes me a bit sad that I don’t get to see more of his posters.

Steak Mtn.

Christopher Norris has been a big influence on me over the years. On top of loving his band (Combatwoundedveteran, RIP), his design work and drawings made me think differently about design, illustration, and the punk/DIY aesthetic. His work is a mix of weird, gross, scary and funny.

Alis Atwell

Alis is one of the best art directors I know of. I had the pleasure of working with her at Bloomberg Businessweek and at Wieden Kennedy. She’s a very artistic art director, but most importantly she knows how to make stuff happen. Her ideas sound impossible to put into practice but then she just goes ahead and realizes them. A gigantic butt made from paper mache comes to mind, which she made during our time at WK.

Ed Templeton

Ed Templeton is a skater who just happens to be a creative genius. He paints, he photographs, he makes zines, and does just about everything else. He captures whatever’s happening on any given day. It’s an exercise in looking at life and telling an ongoing story. I read an interview he gave HUCK magazine a few years ago that turned out to be absolutely crucial in helping me figure out what the hell I was doing with my life.

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