How To Make A Layered Poster – Help Needed!

Interim crits are brilliantly handy things. Better, at least, than the external agency you’re working with showing up at the end and just being able to say: “boy… did you mess up or what! AMIRITE?!”

There’s still the chance of Elastic coming back to me and saying that, but my two concepts seemed to go down well. Funnily they seemed to have seen my previous blog posts and so already knew my concepts, a little at least. We were short on time so I pushed my favourite idea. The one more likely to be a nightmare to make. Oh well.

The concept is creating a layered poster which the user can add or take away elements from. The idea is meant to give clients the feeling of being in control, it makes design more playful, yet through visual aesthetic it will appear scientific to reassure of design’s certainty of ROI. That’s the elevator pitch. But what exactly is a layered poster? To tackle this question I went down to the workshop and talked over things with one of the technicians there. I came out thinking it might be better to work on acryllic rather than acetate. The poster would be mounted on the wall with a unit mounted to its left. This would contain sliding layered you would slide over the back poster.

The unit itself might resemble this JosephJospeh chopping board set. Each layer couldn’t be pulled right out, and it would be on its side, made from acryllic. I’ll be able to post up sketches by tomorrow.

Courtesy of JosephJoseph

Courtesy of JosephJoseph

Courtesy of Miffra Lee on Behance

Courtesy of Miffra Lee on Behance

As you can also see above a layered acrylic poster can look pretty stunning, though I’d have to screenprint onto it, quite a chore apparently. Given the print department don’t know who I am or if I can screenprint then they’ll probably show me the door. Jeez, I hope not.

An alternative idea would perhaps be even more labour intensive and would be an even more intense learning experience… perhaps a step too far I’d say. Gary suggested I try making these acrylic layers engraved by laser-cutter and then to edge-light the panels. This brings out the design in fantastic clarity. Instead of pulling out each layer you would flick it on and off with a switch.

Courtesy of... Aperture Science?

Courtesy of… Aperture Science?

It’s a really cool effect that hasn’t been utilised much by capable designers, so it is tempting, I won’t lie. But I have nowhere near the technical skill to pull something like that off. Additionally you would need the environment to be dark for this to work meaning I’d have to house it in something which is both even more work, difficult to make pretty and makes me question – where would the client even use this? How would they view it, in what scenario?

The final suggestion came from the meeting today from Guy Connell at Elastic. He suggested perhaps making it a printed piece, and in my head converting this to print would involve some sort of loop binding, like is used on swatch books by Pantone (and whatever other companies make such things.)

Courtesy of Pantone

Courtesy of Pantone

I have too many options too far apart from one another now. I have barely 3 weeks on this project now so by the end of the week I’m deciding which route to head down. Any suggestions? I’d love to hear ’em. Love it.

Listening to: Falling by Haim





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