January 8, 2011

New(ish) Art by Terrapin Brewing

This is a post of Terrapin labels I've been collecting for a while. First, their final installment in the Georgia Theatre benefit series:
From the label copy:
“Predawn light barely tinged the sky as a haze permeated downtown Athens. From the tiniest incendiary spark, a feverish flame kindled in the Georgia Theatre. It ran rampant through the timbers above and below, an acris smell seeping through the double doors on Lumpkin. Billows rose above the city carrying the embers of music and memories up in smoke. By noon on the scorching June day, the hot spot and all its history were smoldering ashes. But after more than a century, it’ll take more than spontaneous combustion to end our run. Hoptaneous Combustion is the last blast in Terrapin’s Georgia Theatre Sessions, a Double IPA exploding with hoppy flavor.”
Dramatic. The design for this is less intricate than the other three, with just an image of the theatre, two enormous hops with burning fuses, and the radiating lines to indicate fire without showing a burning building (which would be sad). Nothing special, but clean and well-done. The one thing I'd really change is that basically every element (hops, theatre, banner) is one-third of the label, which makes it tough to know what's the focal point.

Now the unfortunately named Moo-Hoo
This is more standard Terrapin. A turtle in a cow costume, udder prominent. Totally ridiculous, tons of fun, and still suggesting the agricultural roots of the ingredients with the farm theme. The perspective is more focused on getting us a barnyard feel than on appropriate scale. I like the way the fence brings your eye around the label.

And, whenever there's a Russian Imperial Stout, I'm anxious to see what overdone commie reference gets made:
In the Side Project 13, I give lots of points for the name "Big Daddy Vlady's" and that lovely shade of red they used to bring out the green of the lettering and the commie/onion dome/hop central item. Lenin looks silly and not particularly well-rendered, but he does the job. The turtle head in the red star is a nice touch. Ridiculous, but if every Russian Imperial Stout label had this sense of humor, I'd dread them less.

And lastly, to be released in late January, Side Project 14:
I am very intrigued by the idea of a "black saison," and I like the dark background. Terrapin consistently picks great colors for their label backgounds, it seems. The jester is a little strange, especially in the face, and is it just me or do the bells look a little like bombs or mines? That's just me? Okay.

Anyway, Terrapin's labels are not always perfect, but I've never seen one by them that wasn't at least interesting. For a brewery as prolific as they are, that's quite a statement.


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