Movie posters these days tend to be dominated by clichés, like giant floating heads and dudes standing in front of the apocalypse. Which makes these paper art movie posters from Spanish design studio Atipo so refreshing: they forego flashy graphics for a clever and simple use of texture. Strategically placed wrinkles, burn holes, folds, and cuts are enough to symbolize themes of classic films.
The studio imagined how characters might interact with pieces of paper. Jaws is represented hilariously by a bite mark out of a blue sheet’s corner; Bonnie and Clyde by a smattering of pencil-poke bullet holes; and Fahrenheit 451 by paper burning to a crisp. And if you haven’t yet seen Benjamin Button, there’s no need to watch it after seeing this wrinkled-to-smooth piece of parchment, which gets the point across perfectly.
A short film documents the series’ design process–it was made as part of a promotional campaign for the launch of graphic service provider Minke’s new Paper Gallery website. They cast paper types as characters–“Colorplan China White,” the name of a paper stock, starts to sound like the name of a movie star. Tactile and handmade, the pieces go against the grain in an age of flat, software-driven design. And that’s part of what drives Minke’s philosophy: by specializing in seemingly dated crafts like embossing, bookbinding, and letterpress, the studio aims to revive the analog side of graphic design. This subtle, artful “Paper for Characters,” as the studio calls it, reminds us that movie posters can be so much more than what Photoshop-happy Hollywood has created.