In 2010, Universe published Tunes: A Comic Book History of Rock and Roll, which was originally a French-language book called Rock Strips. McD Workshop’s Chris McDonnell was brought on to update the design, and as Chris quickly realized was necessary, hand-re-letter the entire book. Above are Rock Strips, the original French language edition and Tunes, the English translation design featuring the hand-lettering.
Chris’s original, alternate cover design pitch. The publisher decided to simply have me update the existing cover.
Here is a comparison of the original comic about Elton John by Charles Berberian and Chris’s re-lettering.
This comic on the Sex Pistols by Jean-Christophe Menu had a ton of words written in a style which fortunately is very compatible with Chris’s own natural hand lettering.
This comic on Metallica by Riad Sattouf had a lot of nice, white space around the lettering and allowed Chris to copy letter forms as exactly as possible.
Each artist’s lettering was a unique challenge to replicate or at least approximate. Here’s a comic on AC/DC by Appollo-Brüno and Chris’s lettering on the right.
This comic on Nick Cave by Laure Del Pino was challenging because of how integrated the lettering was into the image.
This comic on Jimi Hendrix by François Ayroles involved re-lettering the title and very involved letter forms.
This comic about The Stranglers by Serge Clerc had a highly individual lettering style that was interesting to copy and try to fit into all the many boxes.