I FOUND THIS FUNNY

826LA Los Angeles

I FOUND THIS FUNNY — 12 x 18 in. (30.5 x 45.7 cm)

A few months after Spelling Bee for Cheaters writer/director Judd Apatow offered to host another fundraiser for 826LA. Judd has been one of the pillars of the organization from the very start, and always puts together the best events. This would nominally be billed as a launch party for his new book “I Found This Funny,” a collection of pieces that he… found funny. The event would feature comedians and musicians that made Judd happy. Perfect! Best of all, for the poster design, Judd asked for me by name.

Yes, in this case, my name was “the guy who did the Spelling Bee poster,” but how is that bad? Judd thought it was funny, and that’s a pretty damn excellent compliment from a pretty amazing source for a nerdy wanna-be like me. Needless to say, I went into overdrive to come up with something cool for the event.

In his usual fashion, Judd kept lining up amazing guest stars, so I figured that they should be very prominently featured. Big names fill seats, and filled seats mean money raised. I went for a typographic solution, a bright pink color scheme, and lots of little meta jokes. As I’ve said elsewhere, when it comes to print a lot of little funny bits add up to more laughs than one big single-use gag.


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If there was a problem with this poster it was only that the lineup kept changing, so that I had to redraw and rebuild the big wedge of guest names each time. Nobody realized that it was drawing the names by hand each time. It’s not like it would’ve changed anything, either. It’s in the nature of these charity events that people come on board and sometimes have to drop out again, while others aren’t able to give a definitive yes until the last minute. If you look below, you can see a change in the lineup that happened after the print deadline. It struck me as funny, the way I handled it, but the team at 826 thought that it might very well offend our final guest.

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On a technical note, I had my lettering digitized for the body copy of this poster. I was expecting more changes to my little jokes than there were, and I was already in preparations for my next book, where Bucher Regular and Bucher Bold would see heavy use.

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And was Judd pleased? Yes, he was. Phew! Not only that, he agreed to contribute a great page to the aforementioned book—344 Questions? After all of that I got to meet him in person at the event, and it was a pleasure. He was a total mensch. As I thought he would be, but you can never tell in advance. I really enjoy when I get to be a fan boy for people that are nice about it. And the cherry on top? I got the chance for an encore.

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Did I have the presence of mind to get my poster signed in the designated area? Of course not.
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