When you picture hippies, you probably picture bell bottoms, long hair, and LSD. You might also think of a very specific graphic design and illustration style, seen on concert posters and album covers: curly, cloudy, barely-legible lettering, trippy colour combinations, and decorative meandering borders.
This style was first conceived in San Francisco by a handful of designers in the late 1960s. Their job? Make posters for bands like The Byrds, the Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, Steve Miller Band, Jimi Hendrix… all of whom were just getting their start, competing for nightly stage time at venues like the Fillmore and the Avalon.
But these designers didn’t invent that now-iconic style. In fact, they were heavily influenced by an art movement that started in the late 1800s called Art Nouveau.
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