Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Poster Design

We have recently looked at the different kinds of images used in instruction, as well as the principles, actions, and tools used by graphic designers to focus the viewer's attention. As you are creating your projects for this class, you may find design work challenging unless you spend time looking at the work of others. Therefore, I am posting some good examples of posters here to help you with your poster design project. These posters were "borrowed" from, Illustration Design Blog, and Grain Edit.

In this class, you will need to spend at least 30 minutes per day LOOKING at page layout, composition, color, and image choice on websites, magazines, posters, cereal boxes, junk mail, newspapers, books calendars... whatever you encounter. As you examine new visuals, consider:
  1. Composition - What did the designer do to make the page layout interesting to look at? How is negative or white space used to focus attention?
  2. Shape - What shapes are used? How do they relate to each other? What message do they convey?
  3. Type font - How does the type communicate the message to the intended audience?
  4. Color - What kind of mood does the choice of color convey? What effect would a different color have on the mood?
  5. Contrast - What impact does contrast have on the design?
  6. Repetition - Is repetition used in the design? How so? Is it successful?
  7. Alignment - How is alignment used to organize the page and communicate the message?
  8. Proximity - How is proximity used to to show relationships between visual information?
Finally, what do you think about the poster examples provided above? Do they help you come up with a unified design concept that you will carry through all of your design projects this semester?


  1. First, the new look rocks!
    As for the examples you provided here and those from our class, they encouraged me to try out different layouts starting from the way things are positioned in my poster, the colors, and even size. The designers used different ways to show contrast and proximity through daring colors, expressive font, and eye catching shapes. Those examples gave me ideas on how to make my most important information pop out! I started to have some clear view of what theme my design projects will take.

  2. These posters are really cool. The use of depth and color in the first one is insane. I feel like I am one of the inhabitants of a black-and-white village that has just been color-bombed…and I’m about the feel the shockwave. While it is an awesome image, I’m not sure what it is intended to communicate. In fact, many of the posters had a eye-catching appeal that did not seem to be derived from their educational elements.

    I noticed that many of the posters used much more of their space for non-instructional purposes. There was a lot of negative space, which was usually filled with some appealing color and/or texture. Even in terms of meaningful info, they restricted their useable text to convey who, what, when, where, and left more complex thoughts to interpretation through graphics. Those realizations made me reconsider my approach to an educational poster. I was thinking that more manageable information would be better, but maybe less is more when it comes to posters.

    I definitely want to do something with distinguished background and foreground like the Jazz and Warped Tour posters. I especially like how the Jazz poster makes the “Jazz” more like a graphic than text, and the text that is used on the poster stands out but is not overwhelming. I will definitely take the lessons learned from these posters and trying to create something that communicates a message that doesn’t make people feel like they are being beaten over the head with it.

  3. My favorite poster is definitely the first and last one! I love the use of various colors in the first poster. It is so eye-catching, that as a viewer, I actually wanted to know what the poster meant or represented; I just would want to put it up in my room somewhere! I don't know if its just me, but when I see visual images that aren't eye-catching, I overlook them.

    There are many components that go into an effective image, however I believe the most effective to be a variety of colors and composition. Some of the rules to visual imagery can be tainted, however, these two can not. Composition is very important because the point to imagery is for the viewer to know what he or she is looking at without so many words; therefore, it is important for the layout to be as interesting and understanding as possible!

    The images I have seen this semester have proven to be very creative without effort. I must admit, before I joined this class, I was very nervous because I know I'm not as "artsy" as many may be. After seeing some of the images, I realized that it doesn't take a craftsmen, it just takes a creative person with an idea!

  4. The posters are such very creative works. I really like the fist one, even though i don't know what is the point of the poster. It is very creative work in term of the image. I am curios to know what tool the designer used to create the poster.

    From the posters I noticed that texts are very limited on the poster. The main component that convey messages is images. I also noticed how the composition and contrast play very important role in a poster. Overall, these posters are helpful.