Blast from the Past

There was a time when movie posters were mostly hand-painted however gradually with advent of computer graphics this fascinating art has slowly faded. Even though in today’s time, some of the digitally created print materials used for marketing campaigns are remarkably creative, the hand-painted posters of yesteryear's in comparison had a charm which surpasses them all.

The poster of the epic drama film ‘Mother India’ (shown below), till date remains the most impressive movie print advert in terms of composition and theme. It metaphorically represents India and symbolizes women empowerment in the most dramatic manner.

What made these hand-painted vintage posters special were their unique characteristics-unconventional way of using (mostly loud and rich) colors, 3D styled typography, impasto-like thick brush strokes and typically the background-foreground or Hero-Villain figures would be contrasting with complementary colors.

The iconic movie poster of film ‘Gone with the wind’ highlights the leading roles in a passionate moment against the backdrop of American Civil War representing the ‘Historical Romance’ genre of the film. 

With media expansion, today there are numerous streams for promoting and advertising a film, however in the yesteryear's, print media played a primary role for advertising since internet, cable TV and other such options were absent. The posters were meant to be informative enough to club all the elements of the movie- the theme, story-line, mood and casting of the film.

The poster of film ‘Pakeezah’, skillfully highlights the most poignant scene of the movie summarizing the movies story-line- a tragic love story of a courtesan. In the scene illustrated, heartbroken, she dances over broken glass leaving bloodied footprints in her path.

This aesthetically striking poster of film ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ with minimal colors and figure details, effortlessly conveys the cultural and historical theme of the film.

Typography, creative composition and color theme of posters shown below (‘Chupke Chupke’ and ‘Angoor’) hints at the comic element and lighthearted feel of both the movies.

These incredible movie posters of classic movies –‘The good, the bad & the ugly’ and ‘Indiana Jones’, summarize the action, fantasy and adventure involved in the film. Even photoshopped images of current times pale in comparison to the creativity and originality of these posters.

Skillfully layout, typography and colors make the poster of this romantic comedy ‘My Fair Lady’ a rare collector’s item. Brimming with hot pink this masterpiece dexterously reflects both the time period and style of the musical film.

Poster of the movie ‘The Kid’ has an immensely emotional and dramatic approach, the composition showcases the most touching scene of the film when the authorities come to take the boy to an orphanage. The illustration leaves the outcome to the audience imagination hence luring them to watch the film.

Some hand-painted posters of classic movies to adorn your walls:

Posters for romance genre movies ‘Silsila’ and ‘Guide’, employs warm colors wherein the main leads softly fuses with one another and the background.

Flowing style and flat colors for movies ‘Bobby’ and ‘Heera Panna’.

Abstract collarge of the action packed James Bond movie – ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’

Poster as innovative and interesting as the masterpiece movie ‘Mera Naam Joker’ directed by Raj Kapoor

Both the posters follow a similar color palette and format for a melancholic feel, as is the subject of both the movies. ‘Kora Kagaz’ shows the conflict between the main characters and ‘Neel Kamal’ depicts the love triangle.

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