The beginnings of posters can be traced back to France, where they were first used for advertising purposes in the 19th century. Later on, they spread to the rest of Europe, Jules Cheret being the first to highlight their real artistic value. Today, most people find themselves designing a poster at some point in their life, whether for promotional purposes or just for the fun of it. But what are the secrets to designing a good poster? Here are some tips to get you familiarised with this form of art.
Create a focus
Posters are mainly about conveying messages or ideas to a broad audience. Those messages or ideas should be your focus. Therefore, make sure you rank your information based on its importance and that you keep it as simple as possible. Once you have established what the information to be communicated is, you can focus on the visuals.
Pay attention to details
As with every form of art, the beauty of posters also lies in the details. So does their effectiveness. In other words, an inspired choice of fonts or colours or a bold contrast is bound to stir a positive reaction from the audience. Also, being consistent with details is very important, especially if designing a series.
Toy around with the type
Of course, consistency does not imply using the same fonts over and over again. Toying around with the typography can deliver great results, although risky. In fact, a proper use of type can substitute for the use of illustrations or images. Also, it can create a certain mood to suit the event you are promoting. And finally, you will find the whole exercise quite invigorating.
Balance your poster
So, you have chosen your type, your images and all the other individual elements. However, they will only reach their ultimate artistic value if fit together into a balanced composition. Of course, rules are made to be broken, which is where style comes in, based on the importance of the information included on the poster.
Make a scaled-down version of your poster
According to one of the main principles of marketing, one needs to be exposed to any given information twenty times before remembering it. In this context, making mini versions of your poster can help convey messages more effectively. This will allow you not only to upload it on websites or attach it in emails, but also test its design.
Explore various printing techniques
Poster printing is a challenge in itself for the right choices will vary depending on the locations and viewers of your poster. Thus, letterpresses, UV layers, screenprinting or foiling are just some of the many printing options that will highlight the fact that some things work only on paper while others work only in digital projects.
In the end, a quick look at any high-quality poster design work, whether professional made, like a poster print and design, for instance, or one created by an amateur designer who is familiar with the rules of this form of art, will reveal the fact your poster can only stand a chance if you allow yourself to have fun and be as creative as you can. So, enjoy!