Every year the ‘Music Industry Centre’ approaches the ‘Graphic Design’ course faculty to design promotional posters for their event ‘MicFest’. The event is an end of year showcase of music students’ production works (albums) and performances. This year ‘MicFest’ 2017 representatives have briefed us to deliver a design that is vibrant, celebratory and dynamic. They also wanted the posters to contain more abstract visual components but also eluded to sound-audio and entertainment. It was interesting to note that in the hand-out that they provided us it mentions the phrase ‘letting people into the musicians brain’ .
I started a few rounds of ‘word association’ based on the phrase above. I came up with some keywords that I felt to be most potent from my brainstorming; ‘membranes’, ‘brain’, ‘dreams’, and ‘lucid’. I have decided to interpret the visual components for the poster design from an abstract and surreal point of view.
‘Visuals and Sketches’
A few weeks before the briefing I completed some concept sketches for another assignment but never ended up using them. This time I thought I’d take elements from the original sketches and re-work them for ‘MicFest’.
Initial design elements:
ALL CAPS LETTERS
Organic ‘blobs’/ shapes
Incorporate both hand and digitally rendered components
My poster design/s has to be effective in communicating the details of the event. I required a firm Geometric Sans-serif font to compose the whole design around. I did various text layout with different fonts including Proxima Nova, Helvetica, Myriad Pro before settling with Futura. The main reason I used the Futura font family is because of its neutral yet versatile applicability. The font’s spatial arrangement contributed by a taller than average ‘x-height’ makes it a suitable display and heading text. Futura has an overall modern and clean aesthetic.
In my first piece, the main visual focal point are the abstract shapes and textures in the upper half of the poster. It is meant to be my abstract-version of human membranes. I included a white rectangle to frame around the design just to keep the organic composition a little anchored.
The feedback I received for this concept were that it gave off an electronic music festival vibe. It also was also mentioned that the visual appeared to be quite dominating and could easily overpower everything else in the poster.
I decided to pare back the design in this concept and allow the text to be more readable. Amongst the textural visual, the font held well when arranged around it. The black canvas, I felt, accentuated the text more which encouraged readability. In this design the minimalist approach actually helped reaffirm visual hierarchy.
This toned down design actually read more positively by my peers. It was a lot easier for them to navigate through the text’s content and flowed a lot better.
In my final concept I decided to pay homage to one of my favourite things, collages. In this design I actually wanted to translate what it feels like to be inside a creative’s mind. I represented it as a mini jungle spawning from someone’s head. I found a gramophone in a magazine and incorporated it into the collage piece to elude to ‘music’ and ‘entertainment’.
Overall, an energetic and fun design interpretation.
Note: I didn’t get the opportunity to share this final design with my peers.
I have submitted my concepts to our clients for review and the most successful design would be chosen to promote the event. Stay tuned for updates!!!
©Tracy Ng. All rights reserved.