Motivational Poster for Daria?
November 27, 2011 4:41 PM   Subscribe

Are there any existential, motivational posters? (not these guys.) I'm looking for posters that aren't motivational in the usual sense; hopeful, syrupy statements about the future and quotes about how life is beautiful isn't the sort of motivation I'm going for. I'm looking more for blunt truths.

I want to give this as gift to a friend (and myself, if I'm honest). We both share histories of depression and have been each other's support through those times.
I'd like to buy her/me a poster that is visually striking and good wall art but that can also pass our cynical realist filters and still manage to make us feel like it might be worth it to get out of bed, grit our teeth, and maybe even smile.

Posters that I'm considering or come close are these:
"Enjoy Yourself. It is later than you think."
"We don't see things as they are. We see things as we are."
"Inhale. Exhale. Smile."

So? Any suggestions?
posted by elleyebeebeewhy to Grab Bag (14 answers total) 30 users marked this as a favorite
We are going to make it through this year if it kills us.

Actually several of Mike Monteiro's prints are in this vein.
posted by grapesaresour at 4:50 PM on November 27, 2011 [5 favorites]

workisnotajob is a place I turn to for inspirational prints, though I haven't bought any (yet). You might also want to check out their flickr, as their shop is a bit hard to navigate, and then see if something you like is for sale.
posted by sweetkid at 4:53 PM on November 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

At least two of those Mike Monteiro prints are lifted almost word for word from songs ("I am going to make it through this year if it kills me" is from the Mountain Goats song "This Year" and "I am an island of such great complexity"is from Pavement's Shady Lane) and he doesn't appear to offer any attribution unless I overlooked it.
posted by GilloD at 5:34 PM on November 27, 2011 [5 favorites]

Keep Calm and Carry On
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 5:46 PM on November 27, 2011

Maybe come up with a quote or statement and find someone on Etsy to illustrate it? I wouldn't call it art, but I've had this above my door for years and find myself chuckling at it even when I'm depressed. That's about as inspirational a statement as my own cynicism can stand.
posted by Lorin at 6:03 PM on November 27, 2011

At least two of those Mike Monteiro prints are lifted almost word for word from songs

Oh I think they're all quotes. "May the bridges I burn light the way" is from 90210!
posted by grapesaresour at 6:31 PM on November 27, 2011

I'm a fan of the memento mori or danse macabre which, divested of their Christian meaning, are motivational reminders of the finitude of life. These (from mefite peacay's excellent blog) are pretty great. I've got this one hanging over my desk.

Alain de Botton points out that in the romantic era it was fashionable to keep an actual skull on your desk. Those are kind of pricey, it turns out.
posted by phrontist at 6:36 PM on November 27, 2011

This Holstee poster was made from their corporate manifesto, after it went viral. It has a blunt sort of hopefulness that's touched me in ways that our cube farm's typical cat and landscape poster haven't.
posted by artificialard at 6:54 PM on November 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

Jennifer Lawson (The Bloggess) writes frankly about depression. She recently went through a bout with it and pinned these two quotes. I don't think either are posters, but you could possibly get nice copies printed or have them designed quite easily.
The first is based on writing by Lawson and here's the second.
posted by elliss at 7:22 PM on November 27, 2011

I always liked Desiderata, cliche as it is - I have a quotables card with the snippet "Whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should" by my desk.
posted by clerestory at 9:37 PM on November 27, 2011

If you're looking for motivation, I recommend the "Getting things the fuck done with Henry Rollins" system. Basically, it involves finding a picture of Henry Rollins looking angry (this is easy) and then, whenever you're not getting things the fuck done, you look at the picture and ask, "What would Henry Rollins do if he were here?" The answer is probably getting whatever you're not doing the fuck done, kick your ass for not getting it done and then releasing the whole thing as a spoken word album.

Obviously, this is funnier and more coherent if you know who Henry Rollins is, but I have to say that it is extremely motivational.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 9:55 PM on November 27, 2011 [4 favorites]

Check out Anthony Burril's work for some good type-only positive message posters.
posted by The Esteemed Doctor Bunsen Honeydew at 9:58 PM on November 27, 2011

Maybe you can find something at Pininterest.
posted by leigh1 at 11:53 PM on November 27, 2011

Daily Aphorisms from the School of Life (a project by the previously mentioned Alain de Botton). With formatted PDFs for your printing pleasure. Some might be a bit sappy, but maybe you'll like some of them. And while they might not be very "wow" visually, they're nice and clean at least.

They have 34 posters in rotation, but the images are all numbered. For instance, today's image is, but you can just check out (for instance) or any other number between 1 and 34. Same goes for the PDF files.
posted by bjrn at 10:17 AM on November 29, 2011

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