Africa poster

ER's picture

Hey, what do you guys think of this poster, the graphics, and/or any of the issues associated with it (the West's neglect of the third world, etc.) There's an election in the U.S. on Tuesday. Get out and vote! You might think voting doesn't matter, don't know. I'm really liking this graphic pattern lately:
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ER's picture

ER

AzizMostafa's picture

And more Cats?
In the US, I think this is more expressive than yours?
Thank you for Exchanging Flowers Not Fire

pattyfab's picture

Type is weak and I'm not sure what bugs have to do with AIDS so no, I can't say I think much of it. Plus the weird chopped off sub-saharan Africa fails to connect with the shape that most of us associate with Africa.

What does this have to do w/the US election anyway?

But yeah, VOTE! Unless you're an evangelical in which case, STAY HOME (and deny that you use meth and frequent gay prostitutes, GOD I'm loving that story)!

ER's picture

Patty,
It's a rotting steak in the shape of Africa. A continent disintegrating in front of our eyes with flies flying around.

Tell me what you really think next time!

pattyfab's picture

Hey, sorry. It's late. I didn't see the steak and also don't see what steak has to do with Africa or AIDS.

Maybe the copy should reference the rotting meat. Otherwise it seems like a stretch to me.

and Aziz - again - sorry about what my country did to your country.

timd's picture

Patty is right, the metaphor is mixed and is at odds with the copy. It has no call to action, there is a piece of information that on its own does not offer any answer (however small and insignificant), nor does it appeal for any assistance. The illustration isn't of a rotting steak, it seems fresh, why are there bites taken out of the uncooked meat – what does that say about aids or the number of casualties? Mozambique seems to have a Mickey Mouse shape chopped out of it. Some of the copy is superfluous, my feeling is that the headline message should reveal its meaning in as few words as necessary, it could read "…than the total casualties in all wars…", for example.
Tim

AzizMostafa's picture

> and Aziz - again - sorry about what my country did to your country.
Well, we have to thank the US for blowing Saddam then bursting him,
but, we have to blame this very US for pulling him out of the hole!

> Over the next decade, AIDS will kill more people in sub-Saharan Africa than the total number of casualties lost in all the wars in the 20 century combined.

Over the next decade, Democracy will kill more people in Iraq than the total number of casualties lost in all the 3 Gulf wars combined.
Sadly, Iraq has been under systematic destruction for decades...

By the way, did you hear the story of the 2 Cats and the Monkey?
This story was set in my early education. Here it goes:
Two cats found a piece of food , but failed to share it. So, they went to the monkey to judge between them...
More than willing to help, the monkey divided the piece of food into 2 parts deliberately making one slightly bigger the other.
Raising his hands with the 2 halves, the Monkey said:
"Look! This is not fair, they should be equal".
So, he bit the bigger part deliberately making it slightly smaller than the other...
Again he raised his hands with the 2 pieces and said:
"Look! This is not fair, they should be equal".
In this way, the Monkey went over the piece of food leaving the 2 cats looking at each other.
__________________________________
Justice of the Monkey?!

hrant's picture

What's the US election connection again?
Is the point to better manage the rotting of Africa?

Anyway:
The meat thing only works with respect to the shape of the continent, nothing else. One would naturally ask: How do I save this meat? Aha, by putting it in the fridge! So wait, does that mean we're supposed to cryogenically freeze Africa until a cure for AIDS is found? That can't be it - that would cost money. The only other thing would be to just eat the whole thing up right now, enslaving its population and pillaging its natural resources! Wait, we're already doing that...

And the type is way too cold.

--

I'm sure you can do better, since your heart is in the right place.

hhp

dezcom's picture

My meagor 2 cents worth as a non-illustrator:

I did not see the meat or, even now knowing, see it as rotting. The flies just look confusing. They make me think of something like killer bees or malaria or some agricultural problem. AIDS doesn't even begin to show without the text. You may need some human imagery--perhaps people partially hidden behind the African continent to show they are forgotten or diminished from western view. AIDS strikes me as more personal a problem than a clinical looking drawing of a map can portray.

ChrisL

dezcom's picture

Along Patty's sentiment about the election, maybe your copy should read:

"Beat the Bushes, not the bushman" ;-)

ChrisL

ER's picture

Tough crowd, tough crowd!

Hey, since I ride the fence between illustration and design, I'm always interested in what the two camps think of imagery. The image was selected for the American Illustration Annual book this year. I put the poster up on an illustrator's blog site and it read VERY CLEARLY to everyone, and was liked very much. But, what do illustrator's know anyways.........right?

Thanks for the feedback, I like hearing other points of views. You can check out what artists thought about the image by going here:

http://www.drawger.com/edel/?section=comments&article_id=1660

Lex Kominek's picture

I got the meat, I got the flies, but the type didn't read as one single coherent sentence to me. I would change the copy, and make it refer to the rotting meat analogy.

Right now it looks like "Hey, that's a picture of Africa... and wait, it's a steak too" when it should be "Hey, that's a picture of a steak... and wait, it's in the shape of Africa".

- Lex

Eric_West's picture

I got the steak first thing. Type second. Flies last. Maybe swing the meat just a little more to the steak side, play down the lines between countries?

Hiroshige's picture

I think it's a poignent illustration devoid of humanity, it's also a little stale. This guy got it right...



...yours smacks of sarcasm.

__________
Hiro

lore's picture

Vultures. Instead of flies.
and give me your fokking money!

ER's picture

"smacks of sarcasm"??

Wow...really tough crowd, tough crowd. No respect....no respect.

hrant's picture

Illustrators? Are they like photographers? "Nice color & composition!"
Content anyone?

hhp

An Accident's picture

But one of the comments on that blog entry you link to call you a "genius". It's no wonder you find Typophile a "tough crowd" when you don't get gushing hyperbole like that.
None of the comments on that blog entry actually explained what it was you think they read VERY CLEARLY. They said they liked it and thought it was clever but neither you nor they have explained why it is 'clever' or relevant to AIDS in Africa (as opposed to any of Africa's other problems).

Even if the rotting steak image is perfect for the poster/campaign, (I agree with timd that) the meat in your illustration looks fresh (etc. etc. heckle heckle heckle).

One of the largest problems in the areas of Africa struggling most with the AIDS epidemic is a lack of (sex) education – there is still a common belief that sex with a virgin will cure a man of HIV. Once that problem is addressed, then they can start to think about how they would like their steak.

I really wish I liked the poster just so I could leave a post that said.

"Well Done".

Si_Daniels's picture

Honest opinion - I think the meat and flies are well executed, but taking the three 'bites' out of the meat makes it less Africa like. Also it's not obviously rotting - the flies would be attracted to a nice fresh cut of meat too, no? Type is not particularly interesting - seems odd that it was posted to typophile and the "general discussion" area in particular.

In the end I think it's an idea/metaphor that almost, but doesn't quite work, and you're forcing it. You could keep plugging away but my advice would be to ditch it and come up with a better idea. Back to the drawing board I think. ;-)

ben_archer's picture

Hiro, I think you should learn how to spell poignant before you unleash the word in forums like this one. Also look up in a dictionary how it might relate to humanity.

Hrant, in terms of content, illustrators are generally not like photographers and I'm sure you're just being as provocative as usual.

ER it doesn't suprise me at all that this image reads clearly to an illustration crowd and not-at-all to a typography forum, so I find myself agreeing with Simon. Although I like the poster visually and it's metaphors 'read' to me, in spite of it's selection for the Illustration Annual (congratulations), the ideas behind it are incorrect. If the target of your poster was say, food hygiene rather than sexual behaviour, you'd have nailed it.

As someone looking on from outside the US, I admire your call to vote.

hrant's picture

Ben, I'm glad to hear you have a problem with photographers too... :-)

But come on, promoting democracy isn't exactly
counter-culture these days. Even the prez does it.

hhp

William Berkson's picture

Edel, you might be interested in looking at the posters of Christos Tsolerides, who used to posted on Typophile. I thought he was able to use type and illustration together in a really strong way.

Here is one of the links: http://typophile.com/node/4982

If you click on his name and then 'track' you will see a bunch of others.

I think your illustration here is striking and well executed, but could be better focused, and the typography stronger.

hrant's picture

William, thanks for reminding me/us of Christos. Anybody interested in typographically-sophisticated poster design would do well to hit "track" on his profile and peruse the hell out of his threads.

hhp

Randy's picture

Just dropped off my ballot at the postoffice.

Edel, I think your work is excellent. Thoughtful and well executed. This is why you are getting the big covers and recognition.

However, in this case, i think you have a good idea but the execution is not on par with your other work. I will try to make my criticism as constructive as possible.

1. Type. It doesn't feel integrated with the concept. Just words typed on a page. I was looking at the Defiance poster on your site. Much better. The words fit in the soldiers ribbons and match the style. Somehow the type should be more integrated in the concept here, or should just be a caption below it. The picture should have it's own impact. It's a little bit of show and tell as is.

2. Empahsis. All the elements are emphasized the same. OK africa is red. But type, flies and Africa are all flat. Maybe what I'm saying is that they're all at the same depth of field. I picture the flies closer and farther to the viewer. Maybe. It could just use more graphic impact. Are you emphasising the rotting meat or the nasty flies all over it? Neither at the moment.

3. The steak. I think the shape of africa is iconic enough without country lines. They distract from the rotteness of the meat. Maybe simplify the continent shape (no bites?) and use the space to make it more rotten and meaty (introduce grey into the meat/blood juice?).

4. Style. It seems too sterile to be rotting. I think it needs more texture like some of your other pieces.

Thanks for your involvement at typophile.
Hope that was helpful.

Randy

Hiroshige's picture

ER, you already have my respect. Your graphic style has attitude and your work has a nice edge to it.

Ben_zene, go away - you're making me drowsy.

_________
Hiro

paul d hunt's picture

ditto what randy said. he always has a way of putting everything together so succicintly. i think the main problem i have is that you can't really tell the steak is rotting, which your concept is really based on. this has to do with the color and the apparent firmness of the steak. if it were me the color would be a wash of deep red with some grey-green tainting portions of it and the steak looking considerably more mushy. but then again, i ain't no illustrator...

Randy's picture

Side note to Patty:

It is unfortunate (or perhaps fortunate depending on your point of view) when a Christian leader is exposed to be a hypocrite of the highest order. It is my belief that we are all hypocrites in the deepest sense. Wherever you set the bar, you can never get it low enough to clear it yourself. Our own words are more than enough to condemn us. I know this is true in my case.

Randy

William Berkson's picture

>we are all hypocrites in the deepest sense

Huh?

A gay-bashing minister who frequented a gay prostitute while gay-bashing?

Doesn't he make the most of us look like triflers in hypocracy?

I mean that guy is a champion. A winner of this year's Nobel prize for hypocracy--and he had a lot of competition! A special medal for lying to the cameras. A pulpit Pulitzer for pretentiousness in Church. A special citation for deviousness before the masses.

I'd better stop. Like Patty, I'm enjoying this way too much. It's a sin. But not hypocracy.

ER's picture

We are well on our way to 511 posts. Remember my Communication Arts cover from back in May? Keep it coming.... let's try to top that one.

dezcom's picture

No sweat Edel, in a day or 2 you will be at the top of the Hot list. Weekends are slow though but it will pick up on Monday :-)

ChrisL

lore's picture

Hiro, I think you should learn how to spell poignant before you unleash the word in forums like this one
Ben: It looks like you've got a spelling problem too: in spite of it’s selection for the Illustration I think you mean "its" selection.

ER's picture

Hey, Chris, well, let me try something. This was at the point with the CA cover where I tried to explain my work. It then set off a historic chain reaction of events.

By the way, Chris, hrant, Hunt, Lore, West, all veterans of the CA cover thread - the image has gotten traction. It's in the current CA design annual. Yes, sounds corrupt, but the jury was neutral I suppose. Nine judges from Design firms and such around the world picked it as one of the best images of the year. But, what do they know...

Getting back to this one. Thanks (most of you) for all the advice. That feller Randy is one cool cat. Gives some very nice thought out info. Hrant is one cool cat too, in some other ways (i.e. sticking to the script) I kid Hrant, chill.

About the image, my thinking. I'm tired of little red ribbons and soft statements about helping this and that. I wanted something raw to get people's attention. I wanted it to be some street thing, not all sophisticated and fancy typework and all. I felt like an over designed poster just didn't work for this. I didn't want to render a grey steak or juice or whatever. Just a red flat silk-screened image. bam. there it is. I'm tired of fanciness. While we sit here on a forum discussing x-heights, Africa is rotting away and disappearing, why be all fancy with the cool fonts and the this and the that? Just put an image down and stick some text on it. period.

Bring it on....

ER's picture

Oh, and if you know what font I used, tell me, cause I was angry when I did that and I have no clue.

Lex Kominek's picture

Looks like Futura to me.

- Lex

Si_Daniels's picture

>We are well on our way to 511 posts.

Unless someone mentions Fidel's Rolex, I think this will hit 45 and be done.

ER's picture

It was Che who was rumored to have a Rolex, not Fidel. Does anybody check their facts here before just typing something in?

ben_archer's picture

Fair cop, Lore; hoisted by my own petard. Apostrophes aren't spelling so much as punctuation, but I won't quibble.

Hiro, you're just backtracking totally from that earlier post. Either you mean to crit the guy (and not in a constructive way) or you mean to praise him (faintly); which is it?

As for you have a problem with photographers too. Heh. I've briefed both kinds, but I've never yet had a photographer get all uh, conceptual on me. They're generally happier just pointing and clicking. Illustrators (in my experience) agonise about narrative content, the 'truth of the medium' and contextual reading, so yes, I think they actually do more in terms of content.

What your president promotes is not what the rest of us call democracy. If you can't vote, riot.

William Berkson's picture

>I wanted it to be some street thing, not all sophisticated and fancy typework and all.

Ok, NOW you've done it, Edel.

What a lame excuse for sloppy typography.

Futura is a very sophisticated font. If you wanted 'street' you should have spray painted it or hand written it with chalk.

And how is centering the text--which makes it less readable here--very 'street'? And does that irregular leading make it agressively 'street'? And does the type enhance the impact of the illustration, or just wander around?

Oh, and are street thugs able to draw illustrations for the New York Times? Is your thoughtful concept and polished drawing very 'street'? Give me a break.

lore's picture

Remember my Communication Arts cover from back in May?
But Edel darling...how could we possibly forget?
Check out http://typophile.com/node/28873

paul d hunt's picture

what do you guys think of this poster

the image has gotten traction. It’s in the current CA design annual. Yes, sounds corrupt, but the jury was neutral I suppose. Nine judges from Design firms and such around the world picked it as one of the best images of the year. But, what do they know…

well remind me not to offer criticism next time you ask what we think...

hrant's picture

> If you can’t vote, riot.

If you can vote, don't.

hhp

ER's picture

Mr. Hunt,
You are mixing images there sir. The "poster" is this thread, which I definitely asked your input on.

The Che cover is a different matter and it is what I spoke about being in an annual. I did not ask for input on that image myself. It was put up by crazy machine gun cat man Eric West.

You're cutting and pasting text, and confusing things. "this poster" and "image in design annual" are two separate images. Got it? Word jumbling is annoying.

I am always interested on what you guys have to say about anything I put up.

Si_Daniels's picture

So what brand of watch does Fidel wear?

paul d hunt's picture

You’re cutting and pasting text, and confusing things.

that's what i get for scanning. honest mistake. all apologies. back to your regularly scheduled banter...

ER's picture

Fidel's watch? Probably the one he took from my father when we left the country. I'll have to ask my dad what brand it was.

ER's picture

>>"Illustrators? Are they like photographers? “Nice color & composition! Content anyone?"

Hrant, if you knew anything about illustration at all, you'd realize we spend most of our time thinking about content.

There's a lot of anger at other artistic fields here at Typophile guys. Except for "Randy", he's cool. And Paul Hunt, nice hat, always steady.

William Berkson's picture

>There’s a lot of anger at other artistic fields here at Typophile guys

Edel, Hrant is one of a kind. It would be wildly off the mark to assume that other regulars here share his views on any subject.

I love good illustration, including yours. But this one has problems...

Si_Daniels's picture

>There’s a lot of anger at other artistic fields here at Typophile guys.

Looking for anger - came to the wrong place. Try posting the picture on a vegan blog or a butchers forum. ;-)

hrant's picture

Ben, Edel: So I guess my question mark(s) counted for nothing. Illustration involves making things yourself, so naturally one needs that rare commodity, Thought. But you'd be forgiven for thinking otherwise upon reading that blog. On the other hand I guess Typophile is one of a kind: we socialize lucha libre style.

Anger, at artists? I for one cannot get angry at children.
Photography, art? If you think about it, it's entertainment.

hhp

hrant's picture

Fidel's watch: don't know the brand, but it seems to be
running on Energizer. May he outlive another 9 puppets.

hhp

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