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Thomas The Dude Designs Hodge is an independent art director, designer, and artist for film key art. A lifelong lover/collector/addict of 80s VHS and cover art, his work aims to bring back that lost magic of film posters.
"We all know the power of good sleeve art. Very often its the first thing that tells you whether or not a film is worth giving a look; sometimes, it turns out to be considerably better than the film itself. But in these days of flagrant, unimaginative photoshopping, its a part of the film fan experience that has long been threatening to die out. Happily, many up-and-coming indie filmmakers, and a select few DVD/Blu-Ray labels notably the likes of Arrow and Scream Factory have been doing their bit to keep the spirit of the video shop alive with their original hand-painted cover art, and in that field one particular name always stands out: Tom Hodge, AKA The Dude Designs, whose lurid, expertly rendered visions have helped sell many a recent indie horror hit: Hobo With A Shotgun, Dear God No, Fathers Day, Almost Human, Wolfcop the list goes on. (And, in-keeping with the days of old, I would say in quite a few instances his cover art is indubitably better than the film its selling.) What better man to serve as our guide on a look back through the era that inspired his work? Thats just what were promised in VHS: Video Cover Art, the upcoming hardcover art book from Schiffer Publishing. Due to hit shelves in May, the fine folks at Schiffer have given us a sneak peek at the book including, as you might have gathered, the images you see in this article..." Ben Bussey, brutalashell.com Feb 2015 - "This is a weighty tome, but is a great conversation starter that should be left on your coffee table. Ah, the good old days........." - Starburst magazine, June 2015 The Guardian carried a full-page feature about this title, headlined 'Can I get a rewind! The lost art of the VHS cover'. "They were loud and brash and full of ripped men, busty women and guns. But was there more to video covers? Chris Campion celebrates the heroes and villains of this lost art." "From the gaudy to the tawdry, the overblown to the downright tacky, this book has it all... Move geeks over 30 will flip for this." - ImagineFX Sept 2015 "Last year we reviewed the first volume of this series here, and what glorious things we saw in those pages. Author Matthew Chojnacki has come back again with a second helping of varied artists interpretations of some very well know, and a few lesser known films. We could pretty much cut and paste the review from last time here. Its all great stuff. The pictures do the talking, a few words direct you to the artists and their websites (although over time these may change as we discovered when looking up artists from the first volume but then thats where google search comes in handy!). Youll be hard pressed to find another series that is this much fun to look at." - Filmwerk.co.uk Feb 2016