Category_Collecting, Category_Groovy Stuff, Category_Screenings, Category_VHS, Category_Weirdness -

Illustrator / Visual Artist Lee Thompson Employs the Aesthetics of VHS to Produce and Present the Shot on Video Project GUNS DRAWN for His Senior Thesis at University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA!

Lee Thompson is one bodacious illustrator based out of Philadelphia who has a passionate predilection for 80s aesthetics. He’s just about ready to graduate from the University of the Arts, and for his senior project he’s decided to go all out in celebrating the artistic attributes of the analog era by creating the trailer, packaging and managing the overall production for his shot-on-video short film / trailer project entitled GUNS DRAWN. The attention to detail and artistic finesse from Thompson is abundantly evident throughout the presentation from the die-cut big box / clamshell combination to the gobs of groovy goodies that accompany his ode to 80’s video excellence. Read on, my fellow Videovores, and clear this upcoming VHSunday to experience a most excellent homage to the vibrance of the video era…


A look at the full presentation on display from Lee Thompson at UArts this Sunday, March 22nd. My gut tells me he's gonna VHSteal the show, mang.

This is your Senior Illustration thesis for University of the Arts. Why did you go for VHS as the medium to present your project? A lot of my work is based out of the 80’s. I’ve made TransPass trading cards which gently caricature people you see in the subway. action figures, cassette and vinyl album art, and I’ve designed classic NES games I call “NONTendo”. And because they are so much fun, it was only a matter of time until I would make a VHS. In my view, they came from a time of care and imagination in the design world. From their cover art to the leaflets, and even the store displays, there was a lot of time and thought put into presentation back in the 80’s and 90’s that you don’t see nowadays with the DVDs. I felt that bringing that same skill and attention to detail back would be a fun project that could really engage viewers of my work, and make them smile in the process.


A closer look at some of the goodies that should be up for grabs at the show this Sunday! This stuff is radical.

Can you tell us everything about the project? You did quite a lot a groovy stuff for this release. Well, in a nutshell , the project was the creation, designing and full marketing production for a “80s era” movie that I created. The film itself is an 80's action cop movie about a sketch artist on the force (I'm an illustrator by trade, so he had to be a sketch cop). I made the poster and VHS cover of course, but from there I branched out into making the store display, the big box slip cover to go over the clamshells, the interior leaflets for the video and even the free giveaway buttons, stickers and patches for the people who come to the show. I wanted to have this idea be as fully realized as possible, so besides having all the advertising and swag components I even have a VHS copy of the movie’s ” trailer” playing on loop next to all of the art.


The VHS release of GUNS DRAWN in all its analog glory as created by Lee Thompson. Scope all those extra goodies. NEED IT.

It’s just the trailer on the tape, but you mentioned to me that you might do the short in the future? Are you selling these bad-ass analog packages? Where can people get in touch with you? As for now, it’s just a trailer for the graphic art show, but oh god I never really considered people wanting them enough to sell them! However, if I get a good response at the show I can guarantee I will sell these bad boys within a month once my web site is finalized. Although today at least, it’s just a trailer for the show, when and if I do sell them I will have the short prepared and dubbed on the tapes as well as other videos I have shot so people can get the most for their dollar. For now, you can get in touch with me through my email, or my Tumblr and @iamleethompson on Instagram or just come to the art show!


The front detail for the big box cover of GUNS DRAWN. Lookin' GOOD, duder.

What are the details on the show, mang? The show is Sunday March 22nd at the University of the Arts, on the corner of Broad and Pine in Philadelphia, PA. It will only be up for 2 weeks but if you want to be part of the excitement people should come to the show. It would make me very happy and I might have some swag for them.

And I’m willing to bet it’ll make all the Tapeheads (and appreciators of killer art) that attend very happy, too, mang! Plus, there’s groovy free stuff on hand! DIG THAT! You can find out more about the show at the University of the Arts RIGHT HERE, and hey, if you’re in the Philly area this coming Sunday, March 22nd, I strongly analog encourage you to groove on out to UArts and give Lee and bodacious relay of hi-fives for creating this most excellent homage to the amazing aesthetics of the analog era. Lee, we here in Lunchmeat Land VHSalute you! You can stay updated with Lee and his future creations on his Tumblr RIGHT HERE. Personally, I'm really excited to see what kind of rewind-inclined creation he comes up with next.

Groove and Groove and VHSketch me up something good, duder.

Josh Schafer

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