I recently visited The Bain Project in Raleigh, North Carolina. The thing is, I ended there out of pure luck due to a friend who simply said: I want to stop at “a thing”.
As I arrived on the location all that I could think to myself was: “How did I not know about this earlier? How had nobody told me?”. In retrospect, I did know of the activity. In fact, its promotional poster hung 5 feet from me in my studio for the last 3 weeks of classes.
What went wrong?
The poster, a beautifully crafted letterpress edition on light toned paper, with a balanced color palette and an elegant typographic structure, was a visually appealing composition. Yet, even though it was indeed a very nice piece, its contents, in my opinion, failed to communicate some of the most interesting aspects of the event. In my case, I dismissed the event as some sort of watercolor exhibition.
If it were not for my friend, I would have missed the opportunity to see such a wonderful structure and experience. Now, don’t think that I do not value a poster that plays with setting up curiosity or that delivers incomplete messages for a viewer to complete, but the type of poster that I am referring to is the one where the message being sent is completely inconsitent with the subject which it means to refer to.
In the end, I can only image all of the missed opportunities that may have crossed my eyes in the form of emails, flyers, ads or posters that I simply dismissed because they did not clearly communicate their information clearly. Graphic designers, don’t forget that there is an audience who needs to use our work…