Bilious Alka-Seltzer shill, 1942


Hard to imagine a contemporary ad headed with a picture showing a man who's just vomited into his mouth.

Robert E. McGinnis - the king of paperback cover art

Today, people buy books on Amazon based on recommendations and reviews. But before that, people browsed in bookstores, airport kiosks, drug stores, and newsstands with precious little information to go on (unless the author was famous). That’s why cover art was so important – shoppers judged books by their cover. And the best cover artist of the mid-20th century was Robert E McGinnis. A new book, The Art of Robert E McGinnis, showcases this major talent.

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Mickey Kilowatt


Spotted yesterday in Seattle: the logo for Zapp Electronics, the love-child of Reddy Kilowatt and a certain mouse.

Alan Moore as the Joker


James Zark's portrait of Alan Moore as the Joker from the classic 1988/2008 Killing Joke graphic novel is nothing short of inspired.

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Vintage Soviet space program cigarette packages


The Soviet space program inspired some of the great space-themed tchotchkes of the 20th century, including a whole line of cigarette packs from Russia and surrounding nations.

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Phantom Manor stretch portrait/princess mashups


That Disney Lover's created a set of Haunted Mansion stretch gallery portrait mashups featuring the paintings from Disneyland Paris's Phantom Manor (originals here) and characters from Disney animated features; the Ariel/Ursula one is inspired.

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Yin-yang Star Wars tee on Threadless


Ciro Trezzi's Death of a star/Birth of an hero shirt design is up for your votes on Threadless -- it's quite a lovely take on the eternal struggle for the Force.

Temporary tattoos by accomplished tattoo artists


Carl sends us, "beautiful, authentic-looking temporary tattoos designed by famous tattooers, including Dan Smith, Dean Sacred, BJ Betts, Dusty Neal, Myra Oh, and many more."

Temporary Tattoos | Tattoo You (Thanks, Carl!)

Michigan State Fair program book, 1967


The program book for the 1967 Michigan State Fair is a slice of heaven -- like the Schoolhouse Rock kids have gone to the carny for the day.

Goth-Icky: vintage monster art, selected by MST3K's Mike Nelson


In 2005, MST3K's Mike Nelson published Goth-Icky: A Macabre Menagerie of Morbid Monstrosities, part of the Pop Ink series -- it's a gorgeous graphic tour of four-color monster art that were pulled from the archives of the Charles S. Anderson Design Company.

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Banksy's "Taking the Piss," illustrated


Banksy's classic "taking the piss" essay (adapted from an essay by Sean Tejaratchi) is a moving, important screed about the colonization of public space by advertising.

The Zen Pencils illustrated version gives very welcome visual component to Banksy's words, reminding us that as articulate as Banksy might be, his real power is in the image.

155. BANKSY: Taking the piss (explicit)

Taking The Piss: Conclusion [Sean Tejaratchi]

Zombie Disney princesses


Tumblr's Zombie Disney Princess tag is a rich seam of transgressive, gruesome, wonderful (and thoroughly unauthorized) creativity (above: Leimanaang). The stylistic variation is what (metaphorically) kills me here -- who'd have thought that there were so many different ways to zombify the Disney princess pantheon, each one so clearly perfect and yet so different from all the others?

Zombie Disney Princess (via Sean Bonner)

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Super Manatee and friends


Joel Micah Harris's spectacular Super Manatee series (also available in t-shirt form) reveals a deep hidden truth about sea-cows and superheroes.

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Exaggeration postcards: sight-gags-by-mail

Retronaut rounds up a series of "exaggeration postcards" from 1907-1967, representing a golden era of visual-comedy-by-mail. Hard to characterize the Texas Jackalope card as an "exaggeration," though -- it's more of an out-and-out lie (albeit a beautiful one).

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