Poster Design Takes On Freedom, Business Base, Nature, & Reflection

Welcome to this week’s blog post! Have you ever dreamt of making something incredible? We believe in the power of ambition, and what better way to motivate yourself than taking in some beautiful poster designs from our Poster Awards competition? Here we bring you a selection of work from both established entries and new contributions that will inspire you to chase after your dreams in 2023 and beyond. Let’s get started!

Taking a Stand: Woman Life Freedom Movement

It’s a complex and harsh reality, but the situation for women in the Islamic Republic of Iran is difficult to ignore. For more than 43 years, women in Iran have suffered the effects of a regime that has denied them their fundamental rights. While women in other parts of the world have the freedom to work, receive education, and live independently without fear of persecution, those in Iran continue to live in oppression. In 2022, the “Woman Life Freedom” movement took a stand against this injustice. 

With this in mind, designer Rene V. Steiner has created a poster to draw attention to the issue. Titled “Woman.Life.Freedom” (above, left), this poster from our 2024 Poster Awards competition packs a compelling message about the current human rights crisis women face in the country. It’s also a stark reminder of the 1979 Iranian Revolution that began a decades-long struggle against oppressive Islamic fundamentalism.

The current movement is inspired by Persian poet Zarrin-Taj, also known by her nickname Táhirih or Qurratu’l Ayn, the first Iranian woman to remove her hijab in public as an act of protest. In the mid-nineteenth century, Tahirih removed her veil among a gathering of men. She reportedly said, “You can kill me now, but you cannot stop the emancipation of women” before they ended her life. One hundred fifty years later, the women of Iran follow in Tahirih’s footsteps, removing their hijabs and demanding full human rights. The stark red background with hands lifting a veil of fabric upwards communicates the reality Iranian women face in their fight for freedom. Bold letters reading “WOMAN LIFE FREEDOM” are colored blue, white, and green, amplifying these women’s voices around the globe.

Australia’s New Base for Business

Glen Kynnersky and Nathan Hotten of Australia’s brand agency Hoyne are the designers behind “BASE” (above, right), a 2023 Silver-winning poster for Made Property Group’s “Base Alexandria” project, a collection of designer industrial warehouses ideally located moments from Sydney’s WestConnex entrance. The Base is a new starting point for business with a dynamic group of high-quality units, ample natural light and ventilation, and even a green area. These incredibly flexible warehouses can be combined or outfitted to create the ideal workshop or workspace. These spaces are suitable for all types of businesses, from start-ups to established companies, and range in size from approximately 200 to 725 square feet. 

To set the tone for the brand, Hoyne’s team selected bold block sans serif characters for the logotype to represent the industrial nature of Base Alexandria. At the same time, the background image is a collection of industrial shapes designed to capture the flexible spirit of Made Property’s design with various shades of blue and white to maintain the industrial feel. The team successfully combined traditional industrial designs with modern shapes and shades to give the poster a sense of dynamism. The result is a sophisticated and creative design that perfectly encapsulates what Base Alexandria stands for: flexibility, innovation, and collaboration.

Nurturing Climate Change

Last year, the climate change poster “NURTURE” (above, left), created by Marlena Buczek Smith, was awarded a Silver prize in the 2023 Graphis Poster competition. The poster illustrates the importance of cultivating kindness and action rather than hatred when confronting climate change.

In large bold type at the top, the phrase “Nurture” appears as a call for unity and care for our planet. Along the bottom right corner of the page are the words “BLOOM WITH CARE,” which is an urgent reminder of our planet’s current condition and the pressing need to take action. Smith chose earth-friendly colors, blue and green, to promote a sense of unity and coherence to emphasize their collective importance when confronting climate change head-on. Through this work, Smith invites viewers to open up conversations around topics like nurture vs. nature in human behavior and bring attention to how humans connect through planet-centric discussions.

The message conveyed through Smith’s design is that we must put our differences aside if we wish to prevent any further environmental harm. We all have a part to play in combating climate change and must do so with respect toward one another while putting in place policies that support a greener future. Bloom with care, indeed!

Poster Contest Inspires Reflection 

This Silver-winning poster, “Mirrors” (above, right) is by Pavel Pisklakov and was designed for the “Lemland 2021” international poster competition dedicated to the 100th birthday of Polish writer Stansław Lem. He is known for his satirical science fiction works and essays on various subjects concerning philosophy, futurology, and literary criticism. 

Pisklakov masterfully captured the sentiment of Lem’s quote, “We have no need of other worlds. We need mirrors.” The softly airbrushed design gracefully intertwines two distinct worlds – a stark black left side representing focus and a right side filled with vibrant colors representing our desire to observe ourselves more sincerely. The small but significant white text for the quote further highlights the contrast between darkness and light while urging viewers to take in this insightful reminder.

To enter our Poster 2024 competition, click here. To check out other work from our Poster 2023 competition, click here.

Author: Graphis