Bráulio Amado is back at it again. A man who needs no introduction, we’re covering the designer again, just because his work is always great. Published with Stolen Books, the Portuguese graphic designer has published a staggering year’s worth of work in a 2018 compendium. Filled with over 400 pages of posters, publications, editorial illustrations, behind the scenes action and more, Bráulio continues to astound us with the amount of high quality work he can churn out in a year.
The New York-based designer talks us through six of his favourite projects from the past year. It’s been a rather momentous year for Bráulio, marking the first full year of Bad Studio (Bráulio’s very own design business) that he now works on full time. The book features some heartfelt words around the designer’s first year of going at it alone, discussing the ups and downs of running his own studio, and everything else that goes along with it.
A regular designer of Good Room posters, this most recent eponymous publication sees several of posters for Bráulio’s favourite client; “and is the reason why this book has so many damn pages!”, he tells It’s Nice That. “Good Room gives me the freedom to go crazy”, he explains on the experimental works. In one poster, he even uses a processed photo of his bed sheet as the design’s focal centre point. “Because… why not?”, Bráulio adds on the arbitrary though fantastic starting point. He’s even sent us a photo of the bed, and the sheet in question!
In another project for Jacques Greene’s two recent EPs — which he states looks better in print than on the computer (sorry) — Bráulio evidences a case of a happy design accident. “Initially, the designs were super minimal with caps lock Helvetica and a cute flower on the centre of each cover. But then I accidentally did that weird annoying thing on Photoshop where it rotates the whole canvas and it then takes me five minutes to figure out how to undo it. When I finally fixed it, I thought it actually looked cooler to slightly rotate each 12” cover to look like a puzzle when placed next to each other.”
When Mirko Borsche (one of Bráulio’s favourite designers) asked him to contribute some illustrations to the new issue of Super Paper, Bráulio was honoured. “I made a series of shirtless muscly guys because… I was probably thinking about shirtless muscly guys”, he says on his intuitive way of working.
If you didn’t think it was possible, there is another great story behind Frank Ocean’s Christmas radio episode cover design. While working on Blonded, Bráulio was on his way to the studio when he saw this guy far away carrying a Christmas tree. “He was wearing red leggings so I thought it was funny because he looked like an elf. I took a picture and put it in my PDF along with some other cover sketches and wrote a little blurb to go alongside it so Frank wouldn’t take it super seriously. Also, since I’m not a real photographer, the photo itself is quite shitty. Frank took a screenshot of the page and told me to make my blurb part of the cover.”
In a couple of honorary mentions, Bráulio cites his cover design for Roisin Murphy’s Jacuzzi Rollercoaster as “probably the best cover I have done in a while”, and finally includes a music video he made for his friend Xinobi’s Dance to Hits. Sadly, the video isn’t in the book for obvious reasons but you can view it below. On the video, Bráulio says, “I sent him this iPhone video as a joke when I was fucking around with his photo for the cover of the single, and since he didn’t want to pay me to direct a proper video, this is what he ended up with.”