Some thoughts on the process for exercise 10 of project 2

So going into this project (and this class) I have a minor amount of artistic and design experience (mostly drawing/photoshop) though very little formally (I did take a few classes in high school). As such I would say I am relatively familiar with a lot of the concepts we discuss though largely inexperienced in visual design. With my major in the humanities and the bulk of my college experience dealing with formal writing, I am definitely inclined toward formal document design with clear visual hierarchy.

My “style” for what I wanted my flier to be was formal, mostly serving to deliver information in a readable and succinct way. This is why I strayed away from a picture, stuck with a relatively formal and legible typeface, and kept the design pretty simple. On one hand I feel a picture could have served to deliver the “architecture” theme more strongly, but on the other, I feel that the nature of the field combined with the content of the flier (a lecture series) felt too serious. However, by my final solution I will certainly mess around a bit and try some pictures to leave no stone unturned.

The biggest “risk” that I took, or rather what I feel to be the most interesting aspect of my solution, was the marrying of the words “Architecture” and “Lecture”. This is perhaps a complete gimmick and I’m not sure how well it could be received critically, but I did find the unity and rhyming of “ecture” in the two words to be compelling. I toyed with the idea of one big “ECTURE” with “Archi” joining it from above and “L” joining it from below to form the two words, but it seemed a little too cheesy — maybe I’m wrong on this. In any case, the emphasis on what the flier was advertising — specifically, an architecture lecture series, led me to focus on those words in particular, with lesser information (that it was from the school of architecture, or that it was spring 2017) rearranged to not detract from that emphasis.

I thought that the use of alternating black and white served to keep it interesting with contrast and differentiated the speakers for clarity. I also felt that black and white kept the tone more serious and technical, which accurately represents my idea of what architecture is (though this might not be others’ notion about it — might need more thought). I thought that alternating the text from left to right further built tension and contrast, and is a simple solution. I toyed with the right aligned text also flushing right, but that ended up looking awkward and wrong (which probably makes sense, since we read left to right). I don’t feel that the variation in weight or size was too jarring, as I feel it emphasized the important information (the names of the speakers and the date/time/place) while keeping the rest of the information legible. Again, I probably could have done more in this regard, maybe rearranging it from a block of text into something more visually appealing.

Considering we were encouraged to experiment with color and that black and white could make the poster a little too bland, I thought the inclusion of red would be good. As we discussed in class, I definitely found myself beholden to Carnegie Mellon’s signature red aesthetic. I considered just having the words “Carnegie Mellon University” in a red typeface, but I opted for the red box to make the brand stand out more, though again this might be too heavily influenced by the fact that I go to this school and see that type of thing every day. There might be room for more experimentation here.