D&AD Adobe

D&AD, Design Competition, Development, Sketchbook, Visual Research

Initial Ideas for My D&AD Outcomes

Being an illustrator that enjoys using mostly traditional hand-crafted techniques when creating my work, I decided to pick the D&AD brief set by Adobe because I felt it was the most appropriate in terms of how I enjoy working. The brief is to dig deep into hard-won wisdom and life lessons and celebrate those through illustration or photography by creating a series of 3 posters or prints.


Initial Thinking and Research

Thinking about the advice I’d like to give was probably the hardest part of tackling the brief so far but I decided that my advice would aimed at new students about to embark on a creative course. People are always wondering how I manage to work as hard as I do and produce the work I manage to do so I began thinking about the idea of a manifesto and in a way, exposing my personal creative rules.


Brainstorming my creative rules

Before deciding on which ideas I liked the most, I thought that because the brief outcomes are posters or prints, it would be important to look at poster design in order to help me think about things I may need to consider, such as composition and using typography. Thus, my first sources of inspiration were Saul Bass and Simon Page. I really like the starkness of Saul Bass’ film posters because they are simple and clear to understand, due to the limited use of colour and shape, which is important using the form of a poster because it aims to communicate to an audience. And it has to do so clearly.


Saul Bass notes and thinking

Simon Page is a graphic designer known mostly for creating geometric designs however in terms of thinking about posters, I found myself drawn to the simplicity of his very clean promotional posters for the International Year of Astronomy. His very minimal use of imagery makes the poster composition intriguing due to the balance of mage to background which may be something I think about when creating my own posters.


Simon Page notes

However these posters were very heavily graphic design posters and being someone who draws a lot, I thought it would help me to perhaps look at posters that are more illustrative so I looked at the work of Mike Perry and Jeremyville. I love how both are heavily drawn and how colour is an important element of both. Mike Perry has more of a tendency to use bold bright colours whereas Jeremyville has a slight colour palette in his Community Service Announcement posters which may be worth considering if creating a series of images that are consistent aesthetically. It was also interesting to see how both of these illustrators use illustrative/hand rendered typography which seems well considered and fits the overall posters.


Mike Perry notes


Jeremyville notes


After thinking about potential advice for new creative students, I decided on three statements and worked towards collecting imagery that I thought could help me generate ideas. I did this in order to help me think almost in the same way I would work on an idea for editorial which is helpful because working with obvious imagery at least initially may help me create posters that speak for themselves maybe without the inclusion of text.

My statements are:

Be an explorer – doing this allows you to find new things and go beyond them to push yourself and discover new interests and talents as well as creating choices for yourself.


Brainstorming visual imagery


Composition Ideas


Composition Ideas

Make Connections – Speaking to people and being confident creates opportunities but it is also important to constantly be thinking and making links between things in the world and ideas you have.


Brainstorming visual imagery


Image brainstorm


Initial Composition Ideas

Document Everything – Documentation is a key part of being successful, particularly on a course where people want to know how you’ve made something but also your process of thinking. Documentation allows you to show this.


Image brainstorm

Next Steps of Development

I need to begin drawing, playing with composition and colour, even if I do this as thumbnails. As I really want to illustrate my posters by hand, I need to perhaps explore handwritten typography and think about how I can make use of Adobe software at some stage of the project.


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