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manda0812
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Subway Art - too much text, how to layout?

Aug 14, 2012 3:42 AM

HI, I have been asked to design a poster (see attached) it just has soooo much text and I want it to look sort of like subway art. so am thinking of pops of colour but the sentences need to stay in full. any suggestions?

 

Farmers Creed Landscape.jpg

 

this is doing my head in.. they don't want it too big so original size was 700mm x 500mm thinking square might be better.. any suggestions I would really appreciate it as they are not paying me much so need to get some ideas before I spend too long on it!

 

thanks so much x

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 14, 2012 6:15 AM   in reply to manda0812

    manda,

     

    It is possible to change the appearance in a large number of ways, from simple to complicated, or to leave it more or less as plain as it is.

     

    It rather depends on the balance between appearance and contents.

     

    How to change the appearance also depends on the application.

     

    In Illustrator you may create it as live Type with the Type Tool or the Path Type Tool, and you may look at the overall changes available in Effect>Warp (Arc, Warp, Flag, etc), or you may use Object>Envelope Distort in some way, or you may try a great number of other things, some of them requiring a considerable amount of work.

     

    Maybe you should make a few simple changes of appearance and ask them to consider whether changing the appearance (too much) makes it better or just makes it seem silly.

     
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    Aug 14, 2012 10:13 AM   in reply to manda0812

    I'd scrap the subway idea being this is a farm / farmer themed poster.  Your attempt to get the long text line jammed in to fit the width is killing the poster's readability.  This may be an excellent opportunity to use different font styles per each line.  Are you constricted to a certain size parameter?  How would a square solve your problem?  What is the view distance?  The only parts that are easily read are the first and last lines.  Part of the strategy?

     
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    Aug 15, 2012 8:53 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Please post the end result here.  I would like to see your solutions to this problem.  I wonder if you should have declined the project?  $50.00 is nothing.  However, if you are trying to establish a working relationship and building for future work, then I can see taking a hit like this.  Could also turn out to be a fairly decent portfolio piece if you come up with creative solutions.  I'd also be interested in your time sheet and how much time you spent on the project.  Good luck with it.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 17, 2012 3:03 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Manda,

     

    When I first read the creed, I actually liked the way it required an effort beyond an easy read and thereby promoted contemplation..

     

    For the purpose in question I believe that may actually be an additional strength.

     

    And for that purpose you may consider this relatively simple change of shape (View>Smart Guides are your friends, especially in step 7) :

     

    Depending on whether you start anew or have the text as Path Type,

     

    1a) Create the rectangle for the type, hide a copy of it, write, and hide the original,

    1b) Create a rectangle identical to the one used for the Path Type and hide the original,

     

    With the empty rectangle selected,

     

    2) Effect>Warp>Arch (you may use 50%, and you may (re)try with other amounts),

    3) Object>Path>Add Anchor Points, just once so you get a mid Anchor Point in each original segment,

    4) With the Direct Selection Tool drag over the top and bottom mid Anchor Point (avoid the others),

    5) Use the DownArrow key to drag them down until you like what you see,

    6) Object>Expand Appearance,

     

    If you wish it to be more like an open book,

     

    7) With the Direct Selection tool, select each corner Anchor Point, then click drag the Handle to make it horizontal (Smart Guides will show when you are there),

     

    Finally,

     

    8) Unhide the original Path Type, select both, and Object>Envelope Distort>Make with Top Object.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 18, 2012 6:23 AM   in reply to manda0812

    You are welcome, Manda.

     

    As John said, we look forward to it.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 21, 2012 2:50 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Manda,

     

    I for one definitely prefer the plain version; I believe the emphasis on specific letters will distract the reader from the experience of reading a (coherent and powerful) creed.

     

    You may consider reducing the stretch of at least some of the lines, such as the first one.

     

    You may also try to see what it looks like if all lines have the same relative height, as the other extreme, and then settle for something in between with the balance of differentness and sameness that suits you.

     
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    Aug 21, 2012 4:13 AM   in reply to manda0812

    This is a pleasure, Manda.

     
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    Aug 21, 2012 7:33 AM   in reply to manda0812

    I'm having difficulty reading the .jpg compressed file, very blurry.  I agree with Jacob, the color is a distraction.  I would invest more time in determining font usage for certain lines that are longer than others.  The leading needs to be balanced ( but, you already knew that, right? ), nice even spacing.  I am still puzzled why the square?  Why the size constraints?  Take a look at some sans serif fonts and their condensed versions if any.  Maybe alternating back and forth with one or two different font variations, maybe three or four depending on line length.  The payoff will be when you finally discover a solution to the different line lengths and their demand on space.  Restrict serif fonts to the lines that do not require as much space as other lines. 

     
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    Aug 21, 2012 8:00 AM   in reply to manda0812

    There’s a typo … the word “splendor” is missing its “p.”  ☺

     
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    Aug 21, 2012 2:53 PM   in reply to LauraHaywood

    Indeed Laura, well spotted. I only proofread the original, owing to the silly assumption that Manda would reuse rather than retype.

     

    If it were over here the word would also be missing the u, as would a few other words.

     
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    Aug 22, 2012 5:54 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Manda,

     

    For something as fundamentally difficult as this to read, I believe it is better to have a maximum contrast between letters and background, which would be black on white, or something close to it. I also believe that it is better to avoid colours that differ much in appearance (different senses), to avoid distraction.

     

    With regard to the width, one way to get your way could be to present an even wider option, namely the golden section, which would be 809 x 500, and maybe even show the double square, 1000 x 500, both of which are viable choices in connexion with art and architecture. The choice is always easier to make when you have obviously exaggerated extremes of either side to compare with; the fact that the square is such an extreme will also become more obvious.

     

    Apologizing for being a nuisance, it might help getting the acceptance of the right width if you use the open book style (spread) because it breaks the width and thereby makes the whole appear less wide. With about 700 x 500, 707 x 500 to be more precise, each half would have the same proportions, only tall rather than wide.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 22, 2012 11:58 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Manda,

     

    but actually I see the word honor but we would actually spell it honour..

     

    Are you over here or over there? Over there it should be spelled honor. Over here there would be more words to correct.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 23, 2012 3:54 AM   in reply to manda0812

    You are welcome, Manda,

     

    I really do not want to do much of these as it is definitely not my area of expertise

     

    Afterwards it is (which proportion of the final skills do you think are acquired during education? Obviously, the fundamental insight has to be built somewhere along).

     

    I can see that we are both over here, even though you use dollars down under.

     

    Rereading this,

     

    (as someone passed away in their family that this creed means a lot to).

     

    I believe you should keep the spelling from over there, because that is the creed as they know it.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 25, 2012 7:21 AM   in reply to manda0812

    Manda,

     

    Just a follow up: there seems to be a consensus about its origin as expressed here:

     

    http://www.tntwebdevelopment.com/tff/creed.htm

     

    It has been presented in different ways, but apparently mostly as a mixture of single and double lines, either left/centre aligned or justified, and with one and the same font/size (except for the title). In the link it is even a bulleted list.

     

    So whichever way you create it is bound to be better than what is seen elsewhere.

     
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