Have been approached by Jo regarding a new live brief for the Lyme Regis Film Festival. Not totally sure what the live brief entails, but I can see this fitting in nicely with my professional project.

It appears that it is Chris Walter and I being put forward for this, and there has been a meeting arranged for us to meet the organiser and to see what is wanted of us.

Jo emailed me this earlier -

Hi James and Chris,

Further to our conversation regarding the Lyme Regis film festival, I have arranged an informal meeting for you both on Thursday 5th March at 2pm with Jo Gardner and Marcus Dixon.
This will be an opportunity for you both to see what the project involves and whether you would like to be involved with it. Jo is the AIB cultural Co-ordinator and Marcus is the Lyme Regis Film Festival organiser. They would like you to bring along a selection of your work and to discuss how to develop the marketing material. For this event.
This is a really exciting opportunity and it would be great if you could make it. Please confirm if this date is convenient for you. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Kind regards,


I replied confirming my attendence.



Unfortunately I missed the hour long presentation today with Gellan Watt (MD of Thinking Juice), due to the lecture theatre being overcrowded.

However he agreed to give us Vis Commers a more one to one presentation and guidance after his lecture. From this I gained this useful guidance -

- Have around 6-10 pieces in your portfolio (8 is a nice number)
- Only put in work that you are proud of (don't try and fill in spaces with lesser work)
- Know your work, so if you are asked questions, you know what you are talking about
- Do not overcrowd pages
- Try and have a running theme of how you present it through the portfolio
- Do not overcomplicate pages - let your work do the talking
- Include pieces (such as greeting cards) within your portfolio as they look better 3d rather than flat
- Have a pdf format of your portfolio to send out to companies
- But only have a teaser of your work in case they want to see your portfolio - they don't want to see everything they've seen before.

Now need to get my portfolio together for the PPRD hand in!



Just received my assessment record back for this unit, and it seems all the hard work has paid off! I got a 67, my highest mark on the course yet.

The feedback that I received is as follows -

LO3 - the final website is very you. It is easy to navigate and displays your work very well; the design compliments your work well. The categorisation of the work is good, but I might make the initial slide show less relentless. This does show a very good use of software and a range of design abilities.

LO2 - you've worked through the design part of the project very well. Many of your logo solutions could have worked well, but you made some good choices. Your planning is robust and has clearly aided your decision making and you've described your processes well.

LO1 - you've amassed a lot of relevant information that show you've looked at the subject broadly, through this gaining a good understanding that will serve you well in the future.

Overall, it is all very good feedback. Now to take this onto my Professional Project...


Today was our hand in for our learning agreement. Below is my synopsis of study for my professional project. I'm not completely set on a final idea though, so this is likely to be altered over time.

[Synopsis of study]
For my professional project I will be producing a series of six posters as part of an event for the British Film Institute. The British Film Institute is holding a celebration of cult classic films from the 20th century, and is holding a re-screening of six films. They have commissioned me as a Graphic Designer and Illustrator to produce a series of limited edition posters for these films, which will be shown in a solo exhibition as part of the event, and will then be sold in the Institutes shop. To accompany the exhibition I will also be producing an exhibition guide that will showcase and explain each individual poster and the reasoning behind each design.
I feel that as time has progressed the poster has taken a backseat role in the promotion of film, as trailers and TV commercials have become the major selling point.
Gone are the days of the iconic poster, consisting of exciting type and quirky illustration; leaving the viewer in awe not only of the film, but also the artwork. Modern film poster design now mainly consists of an iconic scene from the film in the form of an airbrushed photograph, with simple type and a simple layout.

My aim is to solve the commercial problem that has seen the poster no longer being major selling point to the audience, with the outcome being a series of iconic and unique posters.
I will be researching into previous poster design, and how different design movements, cultural issues and technological development have effected and evolved it. To gain a better understanding of today’s audience I will be producing questionnaires, which will act as primary research. I will watch and research into each of the films religiously to gain a clear understanding of each, which will influence my design, and the style and medium in which I produce it.
I will be experimenting with different mediums and design processes to produce the posters, as well as experimenting with different techniques to showcase the works, to make them stand out and be remembered by the audience.
My target audience will be large, as it will range from film fans, to appreciators of art and design across a large age range.



Just had a quick tutorial with Sally regarding my ideas for my professional project so far. My feeling before the tutorial was that I need to take my idea to the 'next level'. I have a good solid idea to produce a series of film posters, but I need to add another dimension.

One idea that was brainstormed during this tutorial was to maybe produce a narrative poster, such as on a big wall. An example of a big wall that could be used, is the side of the brutalist architecture of the British Film Institute and The National Theatre. Both provide a lot of possibilities, and both tie in with my project. I will need to research into how buildings can become containers for visual communication. I feel that this idea also links in with my strong interest in street art, and guerilla advertising.

I will be able to do some primary research around the architecture of the British Film Institute and The National Theatre when I visit London in a few days. I believe that this new twist on my project adds the extra dimension that I needed.



As time has progressed the poster has taken a backseat role in the promotion of film, as trailers and TV commercials have become the major selling point.

Gone are the days of the iconic poster, consisting of exciting type and quirky illustration; leaving the viewer in awe not only of the film, but also the artwork. Modern film poster design now mainly consists of an iconic scene from the film, in the form of an airbrushed photograph, with simple type and a simple layout.

You have been commissioned as a designer and illustrator to produce a series of 6-8 posters for a solo exhibition. Your task is to produce your own posters based on film from the past and present. The posters must link is some way whether it is genre, director or actor.

You are required to research into previous film poster design, and how different design movements and cultural issues have evolved it. You are also required to try and solve the commercial problem, which has seen the poster no longer being the major selling point to the audience. You mission is to make the film poster iconic again!



So good old theory started today. A project I dreaded last year, but ended up enjoying and getting my best mark! It seems like it's going to be more of the same this year. I'm not really feeling the theory unit, but I'm hoping it has a similar outcome!

Today we had a group hour session, where basically Anna took us through what she wanted of us. As with last year we are to produce a 2500 word essay, complete with bibliography and Havard referencing. After easing us into this new unit we were put on the spot and asked what we were planning to do our essays on.

I'm wanting to link this closely with my Professional Project so have decided to base it on how the film poster has evolved through the years and why this is. I also enjoyed looking into semiotics last year so will include an aspect of this also.

Anna gave me a few pointers to look into before the session next week. On my point of the poster being a dying art especially when coming to film, she told me to look into the use of graphic design as a marketing tool and how technologies have changed it. I was also told to look into how in the 80s when the VCR was first introduced, this was classed as the death of the cinema, and how this had a socio-cultural effect and impact on design. For my essay I would need to take some key iconic posters from different eras and reflect them against each other.



To help us get started with our Professional Project, Mike Ryan provided us with a presentation showing some of his students research work at Farnham. As one of their units they had to produce a presentation based solely on research of a chosen subject.

After watching the presentations it appears that they were split into these main areas -
- The problem
- What's out there (designers etc.)
- What is needed
- Target audience
- Presentation of work
- Language of design
- Conclusion (what you want to achieve - and how to implement this into the project)
- List of pros & cons (pitfalls of the project)

I found this presentation very useful as it will help me do more thorough research for my Professional Project, opening me up to more options and inspirations.


Whilst researching last night I also came across - WIWP Presents "Now Showing"
Exploring the Lost "Art" of the Film Poster. To put it simply it was an exhibition where designers and illustrators were invited to take a favourite cult film of theirs and redesign the film poster using their own style and interpretation. Or as they put it -

"40+ Creatives were given the task of creating their own interpretation of a Cult, Classic or Obscure film poster from the past, whether it be a literal or abstract solution. The result is Now Showing, an Art exhibition paying homage to more than 70 years of film, through the form of Prints, One Off Screen Prints and Sculptures."

Link to images on Flickr - http://www.flickr.com/photos/keepsmesane/sets/72157601618281265/

The results to put it bluntly are fucking awesome! The amount of different styles, techniques, typefaces, illustrations is just amazing. Really wish I had known about it when it was on as I would have definitely popped along. I'm really glad I stumbled upon this as this has really given me the motivation to do this myself, and hopefully I can produce something that would have sat proudly with these.

The exhibition ties in closely with what I had in my head as to what I wanted to do. It's a great starting point, and I am looking forward to moving on from this and designing my own.

My favourites from the exhibition are -


Faster Pussycat... Kill! Kill!

Blade Runner

The Birds

Creative Review produce a monograph for this show, and I already have it in my hand (thanks to Vicky Martin!). Can't wait to have a flick through it.



Whilst researching into previous attempts at redesigning film posters I came across the designer Olly Moss - http://www.ollymoss.com/

He has taken a minimalistic sort of post modern German-ism style approach and has used simple type and illustration along with just 3 colours of black, red and white. My favourites from the set being -

Die Hard

American History X

and Taxi Driver.


Today we had a class tutorial with Sally, and she took us through each of the Learning Outcomes for the Professional project and broke them down for us.

LO1 Demonstrate a professional standard of creativity and practical ability, including:
• Work that is technically comparable to that made within a specified genre.
• Work that shows an awareness of contemporary trends, styles and
subject matter, within commercial contexts.
• Work that shows a high degree of creativity and aesthetic judgement.

For this everything has to be included (eg. print specs.) Everything has also got to be in the right format.

We've also got to understand the trends with the chosen field (eg. colours, styles etc.)

LO2 Demonstrate a professional ability to plan your time and your work, including:
• Project time planning.
• Working successfully with others in the production of creative outcomes.

We need to plan our time management professionally. For example planning and making time for interviews, research. Also need to take into account time for booking workshops, and the delay between booking and the workshop taking place.

LO3 Respond appropriately to the demands of a professional/self initiated brief, including:
• Appropriate creative outcomes to industry/work related briefs.

This learning outcome is for the learning proposal and the final outcome(s). We need to make sure that everything is appropriate.

LO4 Demonstrate readiness for employment, freelance work or further study with confidence
in the level of your creative, practical and professional knowledge and skills.

This takes into account the whole body of work.
- how it has been produced
- it's documentation ( this needs to be really considered as this needs to be both professional and visual for portfolio)



After deciding to go down the route of redesigning film posters I have been brainstorming further to get a better idea of what I can do.

I could either take an old design of a film poster and show how it would be interpreted today, or I could flip that on its head and take a new film poster design and show how it would have been interpreted in a different era.

There is lots of areas that I am going to be able to research -
- design movements and how they affected poster design
- how type has changed within posters over the years
- different codes and conventions within each genre
- how illustration styles have progressed and into now mainly photography
- how technological developments have affected the design of poster

I have also got a lot of things to take into consideration for my project -
- style and scale
- media and how they're produced
- what films?
- what is the reason behind this project
I have a tutorial tomorrow which will hopefully be able to push me in the right direction. Before then, research...