Four images by Saul Bass.

For those who are unaware, Saul Bass was a graphic designer, logo artist and title designer. He is perhaps best known for his work on a number of Hitchcock films, including Vertigo, North by Northwest and Psycho. He also designed the logos for AT&T, Geffen Records, the Girl Scouts of America and United Airlines, as well as posters for dozens of movies.

Saul Bass had his own personal style characterized by simplified and stylized depictions of human anatomy, large blocky squares and lines, and a gritty hand-drawn look. Bass has been a huge inspiration to me. I find the simplification of form intriguing, and while Bass simplified, he never lost the essence or meaning of the shapes, and in fact imbued them with different meaning for different projects. The jagged arm in the poster for The Man With the Golden Arm, for example, is contorted and distorted as a symbol for the character's addiction to heroin, and the blocks as symbols of his oppression by the drug.

The body shapes in the Anatomy of a Murder poster, however, are more rounded and docile, destroyed not by their own hubris, but by someone else's will, forced on an innocent figure.






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