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If you’ve come across posters around Juneau that made you do a double take, we’ve got your prankster: Jeff Brown, KTOO and KRNN’s program director.
Poster prankster to display work at APAA 032917 AE 1 Capital City Weekly If you’ve come across posters around Juneau that made you do a double take, we’ve got your prankster: Jeff Brown, KTOO and KRNN’s program director.

A humor poster by Jeff Brown.


A humor poster by Jeff Brown.


A humor poster by Jeff Brown.


Jeff Brown talks at KTOO about his newest project aimd at making people laugh, fake event posters. Michael Penn | Capital City Weekly

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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Story last updated at 3/28/2017 - 6:39 pm

Poster prankster to display work at APAA

If you’ve come across posters around Juneau that made you do a double take, we’ve got your prankster: Jeff Brown, KTOO and KRNN’s program director.

Inspired by local artist M.K McNaughton, who recently painted a portrait a week for a year, Brown decided to make a fake, humorous poster each week of 2016. He’s no stranger to humorous creations – he made “The Juneau What,” an annual April 1 newspaper for years before throwing himself into the satirical “Real Alaskan Magazine,” which won first place in the humor category for the Alaska Press Club Awards in 2011. Putting the magazine on hold, Brown made about 50 posters over the course of 2016. He will present them at the Alaska Photo Arts Association for First Friday, April 7.

“My goal in all this is to make people laugh and to make people think and have it look fairly professional so people would actually wonder if it’s real or not,” Brown said.

His poster about a community pot garden starting up in the old Wal-Mart building made enough people scratch their heads that they reached out to the Juneau Empire in late July. The newspaper in turn confirmed with Wal-Mart that the community pot garden was not actually happening, and ran an article to debunk the rumor on July 29. On Aug. 2, another article ran when Jeff Brown confirmed that he was the creator of the fake poster. Prior to that, he had tried to keep his authorship of all the posters anonymous.

Brown recalled pasting up the pot garden poster at the Island Pub.

“I put up the community pot garden one up just moments before and this person came in and started looking at it. He looked at it a little bit more and he looked at it and a little bit more and he wasn’t sure. So he brought over his friends. They look at this —‘Is this real?’ I was sitting there silently chuckling to myself,” he said.

Brown spent a couple hours a week creating posters, and once he finished with one, he’d email them to a list of 40-50 people.

“Some of them put it up in their office, some people put it up on the street and some people just put it up in their house and laughed at it.”

His posters have been about ideas as varied as two-headed salmon, the Northern Lights being out for maintenance, or hot air balloon tours of the Mendenhall Glacier. Often his posters have touched on current events, like the one that advertised a bake sale to reduce the deficit.

“I don’t think we made a dent in it,” he joked.

Other times the posters get political, like one that advertises a home study course for wiretapping.

“I did a book poster of locker room talk. It gets a little political, but I like it when it’s political a little bit. It makes you start thinking about what you’re laughing at,” he said.

He plans to keep at it, he said, though he won’t do one a week anymore. In advance of his exhibit at KTOO on April 7 from 4:30-6:30 p.m., he is prepping for April Fool’s Day, which he called “a national holiday for me” in a previous interview with the Juneau Empire.

To everyone, from Brown: “Keep laughing.”

Contact Capital City Weekly staff writer Clara Miller at clara.miller@capweek.com.