Rock On, NHIA Team Up for NBA Poster Contest

Jennifer Robertson on 11.25.15

Media Contacts:

EJ Powers


Rock On Foundation, New Hampshire Institute of Art and GYK Antler Team Up for NBA All Star Poster Design Contest


Vote for your favorite Alt Star Party poster design on Rock On Foundation’s Facebook page.

Manchester, NH Rock On Foundation’s Alt Star Party has quickly become a standout event during NBA All Star Weekend. Last season’s event took place at the legendary Bowery Ballroom in New York City’s Lower East Side and sold out in less than four minutes, garnering major media attention from The Rolling Stone, New York Times, Grantland, Complex, Pitchfork, and more.

This season proves to be no exception, as the Bonner brothers are poised to host the alternative music extravaganza for the third straight year on Friday, February 12 at Lee’s Palace in Toronto. In addition to a handful of special guests and surprise acts, Girl Talk will be headlining the event, and the cast of NBA TV’s The Starters will be emceeing the night’s festivities. And, once again, Rock On Foundation has been working with New Hampshire Institute of Art (NHIA) illustration students to develop a special poster for the event.

“As we continue to develop Rock On, one of our goals is to find more and more ways to leverage it as a platform to showcase and inspire New Hampshire’s creative talent,” said Rock On co-founder and executive director, Luke Bonner. “This partnership with NHIA allows their students to work on a project for a high profile event in a major market. It’s really been very exciting.”

NHIA student Brittany Inglese designed the poster for last season’s New York City Alt Star Party. Her work for the event went on to be selected as a finalist for the Society Of Illustrators (SOI) national scholarship and was featured at the SOI's exhibition in New York City.

This year, the 2016 Alt Star Party event poster was integrated into NHIA’s senior illustration curriculum.

With guidance from NHIA faculty, the Bonner brothers selected two finalists based on the initial design submissions. Josh Stewart and Dalton Kaplan received the honors. The two students then received creative feedback and further direction in meetings with Rock On Foundation team members and creative team members Molly Scannell and Jeff Topping from GYK Antler, a leading marketing and design agency headquartered in Manchester, NH. The first meeting took place the day of the San Antonio Spurs season opener, but Matt Bonner still managed to FaceTime into the meeting.

“It’s always a treat seeing what the NHIA students come up with,” said Matt Bonner. “I’m really impressed with Dalton and Josh’s work.”

The end result has been fantastic. At this point, it’s up to the fans to select a winner. Both designs have been posted to Rock On Foundation’s Facebook page where people can vote for their favorite poster. The winning design will be used for the event, and the winning designer will receive a $2,000 scholarship. Both finalists have already received $250 a piece for making it this far.

"I had a great time working on the Alt Star poster. Being able to work with Luke (Bonner) and Jeff (Topping) and keep pushing to have a solid end product was a great experience and learning process,” said Josh Stewart. Josh, who illustrates under the name Kooz, creates his work traditionally doing all line work with a dip pen and then coloring digitally. His work is mostly inspired by the combination of mechanical and natural themes. 

"Getting feedback from GYK Antler allowed me to develop my work from just another assignment into something I could see in the real world,” said Dalton Kaplan, a Maine native pursuing his BFA in illustration at NHIA. Dalton’s illustrations focus on human narratives that reference mythology and folklore in order to explore their ancient ideas in a modern context.

“At the New Hampshire Institute of Art, we place heavy emphasis on immersing our students within professional opportunities. Among our many projects, the collaboration with Rock On Foundation and GYK Antler has quickly become a favorite,” said Jim Burke, Chair of the Illustration Department at NHIA. “We’re thrilled to be part of such a high profile, creative event that seamlessly integrates the arts, music, and sports. Congratulations to Dalton and Josh for making it to this round.  We’re expecting a tight race throughout the voting.”

You will dance. You will sweat. You might even discuss Kendall Gill’s 1994 cameo on Nickelodeon’s My Brother and Me with a total stranger. It’s the Alt Star Party.


Where: Lee’s Palace 529 Bloor St. West, Toronto, ON

Date: Friday February 12, 2016

Time: 9:00 PM Doors

Price: $40 advance from, Rotate This and Soundscapes.


About Rock On Foundation:

Founded by brothers Luke Bonner and Matt Bonner in 2012, Rock On Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that promotes wellness and creativity through the arts and athletics. It serves to enrich the quality of life in communities by supporting athletic, artistic, and scholastic initiatives. Rock On Foundation supports its mission through a variety of grant programs, contests, individual awards, and community events. VISIT:

About NHIA:

Since 1898 the New Hampshire Institute of Art (NHIA) has remained committed to its original mission of engaging students, artists, scholars, and the community in the arts through quality education, outreach, and access to creative resources, with a focus on the present and a vision on the future. NHIA is a non-profit, independent college that offers four-year Bachelor of Fine Art degree programs in Art Education, Ceramics, Creative Writing, Design, Fine Arts, Illustration, and Photography. NHIA also offers two-year Master of Arts in Art Education, and Master of Fine Art programs in Creative Writing, Photography, Visual Art, and Writing for the Stage and Screen in addition to serving over 1,500 students annually through its community education programs. NHIA’s academic and administrative programs and residence halls are housed in 11 buildings spread throughout downtown Manchester with additional studio and exhibition facilities located in Sharon and Peterborough, New Hampshire.  For more information, log on to 

About GYK Antler:

GYK Antler is a full-service, mid-sized marketing and design agency based in Manchester (NH), Boston (MA), and Indian Orchard (MA). As an independent agency, GYK Antler has the ability to chart its own course and pursue its own passions. That course almost always leads toward authentic brands whose credible values align with theirs. GYK Antler has made a legacy of transforming businesses and creating deep brand relationships by focusing stories, experiences and technology on one thing: people.  Vist: