NLT1: The Potting Shed: 30 Bays in 30 Days Design Brief

Creation of a 'map' poster for the 30 Bays in 30 Days charity event in the Channel Islands.

Posted by Callum McMurray

Final Outcome

The final outcome for this project was a pdf and an Illustrator document of the map poster for the 30 Bays in 30 Days charity event in A3. This poster was to highlight the location of the 30 bays across the event. A version of the final outcome can be accessed below in a 1920x1080 format.

Open in Final Outcome in a new tab here.


Potting Shed Design Briefs

This project was part of my Negotiated Learning Task 1, in which I had to find a placement or a client to work for. Download the updated assessment sheet for NLT1 here.

I took part in a placement at The Potting Shed Design Studio, ran by managing director Ed Prow in Jersey. This consisted of choosing one of their design briefs they had created for students to complete, to add to their portfolio and improve their skills.

The Potting Shed briefs can be accessed by clicking here.

The Potting Shed poster template can be accessed by clicking here.

I chose three briefs I was interested in, to brainstorm ideas for which was: Alias (Beer brand design), 30 Bays in 30 Days (Charity Event Promotion) and The Potting Shed's Poster Design Challenge (Using their template to design a poster how you want with the text 'We Grow Ideas' as the focus).

Brief Brainstorm

Brainstorming concepts for the 30 Bays brief led to ideas focused on using free 'coffee cups' as promotional material for the event and a sticker book which has a place for each bay (You would collect on the day at the bay). Also, the idea of creating a map that would be in the style of a game or adventure map that provides each location of the 30 Bays event, and therefore making it appear as a challenge which would encourage more people to take part.

Initial 30 Bays in 30 Days brainstorm.

After brainstorming for the Alias brief, the concepts I liked the most were a beer with a label that could turn in to a mask and therefore provide the consumer with an 'alias.' Another concept, was using the duality that comes with the word alias, and create a brand with a mirrored packaging reflecting the consumer in a distorted way. My preferred concept was Victorian/Vintage styled illustrated brand which would connect with an app that provides people with an 'old-fashioned' alias which they can share with their friend on social media, and raise awareness of the brand.

Initial Alias beer brand brainstorm.

For The Potting Shed poster challenge, I liked the concept of using negative space to create the text between tools used by designers and developers. The preferred idea from this brainstorm was creating two posters that act as adverts for The Potting Shed independently, but when combined together form the text 'We Grow Ideas.'

Initial brainstorm for The Potting Shed poster design challenge.

Feedback

After creating concepts for each of the briefs I wanted to pursue, I presented my ideas to Ed and explained each of my preferred idea for each brief. At this point I wanted to pursue creating a brand and packaging design for the 'Alias' design brief, however Ed thought my idea of an adventure map for the 30 Bays brief had the most potential and would push my skills further. Taking Ed's feedback, I started to narrow down the concept of the 'map' and whether to combine element of my other ideas from my brainstorm.

Additional ideas to add or expand the concept of the 30 bays poster.

Research: Business and Inspiration

After deciding to further develop the '30 Bays' brief, I began researching inspiration for a 'map' poster on Pinterest, gathering ideas I thought would suit the idea of an adventure map or guide for people participating in the charity event. The featured images had abstract or isometric styled maps. The items on the map to weren't to scale and used bright colours to be appealing. I was inspired by this style because it gave a 'fun' and 'exciting' feel to the poster like a cartoon. I found maps, posters and adverts in this style specifically for Jersey as a destination for a holiday.

Pinterest board of research for inspiration of layouts and styles of 'map' posters. Click the image to go to the board.

I was specifically inspired by one vintage holiday advert for Jersey, because it had rich colours that provided a positive feel for the poster. It also had illustrations on the island which represent aspects of island life or holiday experiences that could be had in Jersey. I wanted to achieve this feel with my poster, with a lesser focus on aspects of island life because it would focused on highlighting the locations for the bays. Additionally, the isometric style of the poster inspired me to a similar style with my poster, because it evokes the idea of a video game which have these styles and therefore implies a fun challenge which would be a good way to represent the 30 Bays event.

Vintage holiday poster advertising Jersey as a destination.

Sketching

I began by sketching how to represent the locations on the 'map' poster, thinking of combining one of my other ideas of a sticker book with the map. However, Ed offered the feedback that since this was a charity event they avoid spending budget on promotional material as much a possible and paying for the printing of sticker may be too much.

Initial designs for location based stickers to place on the poster once completed.

Taking inspiration from the stylized vintage poster, I started to sketch the outline of Jersey to get a feel for how to create accurate but interesting and compact version for the map. Originally, I was thinking about splitting the design off in parishes of the island, however this made the design look convoluted and less tidy.

Further sketches, with concepts of a stylized version of Jersey for the design.

To understand how much space each individual bay would need on the map, I sketched the island and pinpointed each location in the event from the previous year. This helped me understand how cluttered the coast of the map could end up, as well as the need to potentially make sure the inside of the map wasn't plain.

Sketch of Jersey to identify the location of all the bays.

After, I drew the island in an isometric/top down style that I could use as a reference to replicate in Illustrator, which provided the ability to test a simple layout on and illustrations that could go on the map.

Stylized isometric sketch of Jersey.

Illustrator Development

After creating the sketches, I began constructing the poster in Illustrator by using the pen tool to create an outline of the coast of Jersey, both at low tide and high tide. This was to highlight the drastic change in land mass Jersey experiences between tides, and also because it's important to show the 'bays' in both states. Following this, I used the 3D effect 'Extrude and Bevel' on the shapes to create an isometric look, which was inspired by my previous research.

Initial construction of isometric Jersey illustration for the 30 Bays poster.

Showing Ed the results from my work, he offered the feedback that I should alter the angle of the island so that more of the land is visible for when I start adding icons to it. I acted on his feedback, by altering the shapes with the 'Extrude and Bevel' tool to change it to an angle that was more horizontal, had more land space and easier for a person to read text. Also, I changed the colour scheme to one inspired by the retro poster that can be seen above, as I thought it made the island bolder on the page.

Altered Jersey shape to ensure that icons on the map are clearer, and new colour scheme.

I created an illustration the isometric style that points to areas on the map. This was created by using a perspective grid to create the overall shape, then grouping it together and changing the colour of sides of the shape to give the illusion of a 3D shape. I collected the list of the locations from the previous 30 bays event, and listed them from 1 to 30, so the arrow icon can have corresponding numbers on the map.

Updated map illustration with list of locations and arrow icon to point out locations on the map.

Meeting w/ 30 bays in 30 Days

During the project, I went to a meeting of the main charities and the creator of the 30 Bays in 30 Days charity event in which they talked about the turnout and amount raised for the current year's event and look to improve upon it for next year. During this meeting Ed gave me a few minutes to talk about my project and receive feedback from the 'clients' themselves. Overall, I received very postive feedback about the style and presentation of the map poster from the meeting's attendants, some feedback they offered was to add Jersey landmarks to the map. This was because one of the charities supported heritage sites, and displaying an illustration of these sites would increase the synergy between the charity event and the charitites on the poster.

Further Development: Landmark & Grain

After receiving feedback from the 30 bays meeting, I started on developing the poster further by adding texture to the island to shade the object and create a better illusion of a 3D shape and to help the objects stand out more in the composition. I did this my creating a copy of the low-tide and high-tide Jersey shapes and then using the gradient tool on each copy so they have a gradient from 0 opacity to black. Taking the gradient outline of these shapes, I then applied the stylized effect 'Grain' to produce an old feel across the gradient which homages the vintage poster that inspired me. I repeated this effect on the background with a 'radial' gradient, which focuses on the island to draw the audiences attention to it.

Updated poster illustration with textured gradients applied to objects.

Taking the feedback on board from the meeting, I began to sketch out illustrations of landmarks in Jersey connected with the heritage charity (La Hougue Bie, Mont Orgueil, The War Tunnels and Corbierre Lighthouse) in an isometric style that would match the poster. After a couple attempts, I created a few versions in illustrator because they replicated the isometric style in a way which was similar to the poster.

Jersey heritage site sketches in an isometric style. Further Jersey heritage sites sketches in an isometric style.

Recreating the designs in Illustrator was done by using different methods, like using 'Extrude and Bevel' on complex flat shapes to create a 3D illusion at the same angle as the island on the main poster. Other parts of the object were constructed with the shape tool, and the shapes were adjusted on one side with the direct selection tool so they looked like 3D shapes at a 45 degree angle. Similar to the island on the main poster, I created an overlay for each of the landmark illustrations and then applied a transparent gradient with a 'Grain' texture to replicate a vintage feel.

Illustrator document used to create iterations of landmark illustrations.

After creating the illustrations of landmarks, I moved them into the main document and positioned them in their locations on island. Following on from this, I created an numbered arrow icon for each location in the 30 Bays event and placed them in their corresponding location

Map poster with new landmark illustrations added to the map, with icons signifying locations of the bays.

Final Touches

Finishing up the poster during my last week of placement at The Potting Shed, I neatened up the poster by providing a layout for the list of locations to make it easier for the audience to read the type. The '30 Bays in 30 Days' logo was added to the poster to clearly promote the link to the event and brand. I moved the assets in the document to a Illustrator file for a CMYK A3 sized document to hand off to Ed for printing.

A3 sized CMYK version of the 30 Bays Poster, with additional assets and new layout for location list.

Finally, once I had handed off the Illustrator document and the A3 CMYK PDF to Ed, he had my work posted to The Potting Shed Facebook page to promote myself and my work through their page.

Facebook post of my final outcome on The Potting Shed Facebook page.

The final outcome can be seen back at the top of the page

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