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Designing Outside 8.5x11

  1. 1. Designing OUTSIDE 8.5 x 11
  2. 2. Learn how to MAKE IT so you get heard every time. Make it REAL – the more clearly your students can visualize your event, the more likely they’ll be to come. Whenever possible take objects, ideas and visuals from your event and implant them in your crowd’s mind. Make it EVER-PRESENT – your advertising needs to be so ever-present that you can’t stand anywhere on your floor or in the building and not see at least one ad. There is a popular maxim in advertising that people will view an ad six times before they pay any attention to it. Make it EASY – use stuff that has been done before. Not everything has to be new and improved. Make it MYSTERIOUS – anything that can be “unveiled.” You advertise without giving out any details. Make it CONTROVERSIAL – wherever there’s conflict, there’s crowds. Make it PUBLIC – free publicity is pure gold to event promoters. Let your event loose in the wild. Make it REGULAR – everyone knows when their favorite TV show is. You can make the same idea work for you. Make it CURRENT – by referencing pop culture, you’re able to take a thought already on someone’s mind and use it as a “peg” to hang your advertisement on. Make it FUNNY – When people hear a great joke, they share it with everyone they can. Jokes spread—so can the event you are trying to sell. Make it COUNTER-INTUITIVE – “reverse ads” take advantage of people’s inherent desire to not do what they are told. Taken from “Pack the House” by Brian Brushwood and C.J. Johnson Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  3. 3. Visible Color Com- Utilizize a little bit of COLOR binations Black on Yellow White on Black Yellow on Blue Black on White to generate excitement Green on Yellow Color is a wonderful thing, but you have to use it NON-Visible Color appropriately. Sometimes, black and white posters can Combinations be more effective than posters that use color poorly. Yellow on White Contrast is usually MORE IMPORTANT than color in catching Orange on Red someone’s attention with a poster. To the right, you will Blue on Purple find suggestions on color combinations that work well and those that don’t work well together. Purple on Red In addition to using color for visibility, it can also be used to Contrast Colors set a mood or tone. The chart below gives you an ideas of Red and Green what colors represent what thoughts and emotions. Orange and Blue Yellow and Purple Color Psychology Black and White There is no escaping color. It is ubiquitous. Yet what does it all mean? Why are people more re- laxed in green rooms? Why do weightlifters do their best in blue gyms? Colors often have different meanings in various cultures. And even in Western societies, the meanings of various colors have changed over the years. But today in the U.S., researchers have generally found the following: Black Black is the color of authority and power. It is popular in fashion because it makes people appear thinner. It is also stylish and timeless. Black also implies submission. Priests wear black to signify submission to God. Some fashion experts say a woman wearing black implies submission to men. Black outfits can also be overpowering, or make the wearer seem aloof or evil. Villains wear black. White Brides wear white to symbolize innocence and purity. White reflects light and is considered a sum- mer color. White is popular in decorating and in fashion because it is light, neutral, and goes with everything. However, white shows dirt and is therefore more difficult to keep clean than other colors. Doctors and nurses wear white to imply sterility. Food for Thought While blue is one of the most popular colors it is one of the least appetizing. Blue food is rare in nature. Food researchers say that when humans searched for food, they learned to avoid toxic or spoiled objects, which were often blue, black, or purple. When food dyed blue is served to study subjects, they lose appetite. Green, brown, and red are the most popular food colors. Red is often used in restaurant decorating schemes because it is an appetite stimulant. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  4. 4. Utilize a little bit of COLOR to generate excitement. Red The most emotionally intense color, red stimulates a faster heartbeat and breathing. It is also the color of love. Red clothing gets noticed and makes the wearer appear heavier. Since it is an extreme color, red cloth- ing might not help people in negotiations or confrontations. Red cars are popular targets for thieves. In decorating, red is usually used as an accent. Decorators say that red furniture should be perfect since it will attract attention. The most romantic color, pink, is more tranquilizing. Sports teams sometimes paint the locker rooms used by opposing teams bright pink so their opponents will lose energy. Blue The color of the sky and the ocean, blue is one of the most popular colors. It causes the opposite reaction as red. Peaceful, tranquil blue causes the body to produce calming chemicals, so it is often used in bedrooms. Blue can also be cold and depressing. Fashion consultants recommend wearing blue to job interviews because it symbolizes loyalty. People are more productive in blue rooms. Studies show weightlifters are able to handle heavier weights in blue gyms. Green Currently the most popular decorating color, green symbolizes nature. It is the easiest color on the eye and can improve vision. It is a calming, refreshing color. People waiting to appear on TV sit in "green rooms" to relax. Hospitals often use green because it relaxes patients. Brides in the Middle Ages wore green to symbol- ize fertility. Dark green is masculine, conservative, and implies wealth. However, seamstresses often refuse to use green thread on the eve of a fashion show for fear it will bring bad luck. Yellow Cheerful sunny yellow is an attention getter. While it is considered an optimistic color, people lose their tempers more often in yellow rooms, and babies will cry more. It is the most difficult color for the eye to take in, so it can be overpowering if overused. Yellow enhances concentration, hence its use for legal pads. It also speeds metabolism. Purple The color of royalty, purple connotes luxury, wealth, and sophistication. It is also feminine and romantic. However, because it is rare in nature, purple can appear artificial. Brown Solid, reliable brown is the color of earth and is abundant in nature. Light brown implies genuineness while dark brown is similar to wood or leather. Brown can also be sad and wistful. Men are more apt to say brown is one of their favorite colors. Taken from: Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  5. 5. a few words about FONTS and how to use them most effectively T What is a Serif? 3 basic types of fonts: Example of 1. Sans Serif “serifs.” (ex. Arial, Tahoma, Comic Sans, etc.) T The word “sans” means “without.” 2. Serif (ex. Times New Roman, Courier, etc.) Example of a 3. Artistic font without “serifs.” (ex. Jokerman, Rosewood, etc.) When should I use a particular font? SANS SERIF FONTS ARE GOOD FOR TITLES OR HEADLINES Serif’ed fonts are good for large amounts of text because they are easy to read. Although they can also be used as headline or title fonts, it is more common to find them used in “body text” or in longer paragraphs. That is why books are often printed in a font with serifs. Newspapers often follow this “sans serif for headlines”/”serif for text” rule. Artistic fonts are most often used for headlines. A common mistake people make when designing posters or publications is to use artistic fonts for large amounts of text. This is often difficult to read and causes eyestrain. A well used artistic font can be excellent for a splash of excitement or to create a particular mood. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  6. 6. understanding the difference between VECTOR & RASTER clip art and images Vector-based Clip Art Vector clip art is a drawing or collection of lines and color. When you re-size a vector image, the com- puter re-calculates and redraws the lines and shapes each time. Therefore, even if you blow up a vector image to a really large size, it always stays sharp and clean. The lines are re-drawn perfectly. It is best to use vector images when you want to use a REALLY LARGE version of the image. They are also ideal if you want a crisp and clean look to your posters. You can find vector-based clip art by search- ing through Microsoft Word’s clip art gallery or on Raster-based Images One Pixel Vector images are essentially photos. Photographs are made up of a series of small squares known as “pixels.” When viewing a photograph with a “high resolution” it has a large number of individual pixels. When viewed at a small size, or from a distance, these pixels are impercep- tible to the eye. When you enlarge a raster image, these pixels become more noticeable. Many modern computer programs will attempt to offset this by blurring the image. In either case, your image will look pixilated or soft and unsharp. It is best to use raster images or photographs as small elements on your page, unless you can find it in a really high-resolution format. IF you cannot find a raster image in a high quality format, consider using a vector image instead. You can find raster-based images by searching on,, of through Microsoft Word. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  7. 7. tracking the EVOLUTION of a poster for a hall bbq Draft 1 Notice how grainy the photograph is. See later sections on raster-based images and how to search for better images on Use something other the web. than Times New Roman. It’s tired and not noticeable. Be sure to include all of the important details of your event. Time, Date, Location, Admis- sion Price, etc. This poster was clearly done in a hurry. It uses the standard font in MS Word, Times New Roman, all of the text is the same font size, and the image is grainy and pixilated. When you’re in a hurry, take a few extra minutes to play around with your font choice and sizes. Also, take the extra time to find a better image. Simple clean images often convey your message the best. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  8. 8. tracking the EVOLUTION of a poster for a hall bbq Draft 2 Play around with your margins. This poster would have looked better if it filled more of the page. MS Word automatically defaults to 1.25” The use of fonts has margins, but you can improved in this poster. change this. We now have different sizes to draw attention to important words. The use of white text against a black box also makes the text really “pop’ off the page. It is a simple and effective way to add The clip art has weight to a black and improved since the last white poster. version. It is clean, sharp and simple. It very easily conveys the message of a barbeque. The poster has certainly gotten better. The use of different size fonts, and the white text on black makes the title and purpose of the poster much more clear. The clip art is sharp, simple and clean. This poster is using white space very effectively. Best of all, it took less than 5 minutes to improve it over the previous version. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  9. 9. tracking the EVOLUTION of a poster for a hall bbq Draft 3 Don’t be afraid to play around with the orientation of your paper (landscape or portrait) or it’s size. Consider cutting down your poster into a different shape, such as a square, circle or rect- angle. You can also use different sizes such as legal (8.5x14) or tabloid (11x17). Many copiers and printers can accommodate these sizes. This picture is actu- ally a real-life photo- graph of one of the RAs in the building. A great way to draw attention to your posters is to use a popular or well known figure from your organization in the poster. The stranger or funnier picture, the better. In this case, the picture is mysterious at first glance. It draws the viewer in who wants to find out more. This poster is taking us in a different direction than the last one, and it isn’t necessarily better. It is doing some new things right, but also reverting to some old wrongs. The orientation of the poster has changed to landscape (sideways). The fonts have been moved, but they seem to have lost their emphasis on the page and we still haven’t moved on from Times New Roman. The image has gotten more “mysterious” and will no doubt draw more attention, although it has lost the clean simple look of the previous piece of clip art. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  10. 10. tracking the EVOLUTION of a poster for a hall bbq Draft 4 The flames were added into the background to give the Finally! The font has changed! The use of a poster more depth. Using images as a background that bolder font makes the text stand out much fills the entire space known as using a “screen.” If you do more, especially agains the white. The text at use images for the background, consider “lightening” the bottom, however, is still getting lost. them, or “blurring” them. You don’t want the background to take away from the main attraction on the poster. Consider having images “bleed” off of your page. A “bleed” is when the image goes right off the edge of the page. You don’t have to keep all of your images inside the margins of the paper. This is the last version in our evolution. The poster still ahs some work, but it demonstrates some of the do’s and don’ts of poster design. We have FINALLY changed the font, although the text is still somewhat hard to read and does not stand out. The picture is still the main draw, and the addition of the flames supports the message and the picture. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  11. 11. tracking the EVOLUTION of a poster for a hall bbq Other Ideas... This poster was originally done in 11x17 format. Don’t be afraid to just use one LARGE high quality image in your posters. The image in this poster domi- nates the entire page. Images like this one, that are isolated on a white background, can really draw in one’s attention and it was really easy to make! When doing post- ers such as this one, the most important elements are the image you choose and the quality of it when it is printed so large on the page. This poster takes a completely different take on the program. If you walked past a poster that was on a brightly colored piece of paper and all it had was a black blob in the middle, would you get curious and stop? This poster isn’t high on design, but Are Your Hungry? Want some free food? it can certainly be effective. All of the Good times with your friends? Bishop Hall BBQ This Friday 5:00pm Main Entrance program details are typed in the center of the page in an incredibly small font size. The paper was copied in a bright fluores- cent color. Posted in conspicuous places as people walk by, the intrigue of seeing such a strange poster is guaranteed to bring them in to read more. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  12. 12. where to find the best IMAGES & CLIP ART for your posters Many of the popular search engines allow you to search for images on the web. If you are searching for images to use in your posters, make sure you select the “higher quality” option on the web page (see the example of below). Selecting higher quality images will ensure that your pictures don’t look pixilated. Some common web pages where you can search for images on the web: * * Remember to observe copyright laws! Google and Yahoo will pull all the pictures they find, regardless of if you have the rights to reproduce them. The last suggestion on this list, istockphoto, requires that you pay for downloading its images, but ensures you have the proper rights. istock- photo provides very clean, beautiful, high quality images for a very low price. You can also find high-quality free leagal images and clip art in Microsoft Word... STEP 2 You can search within this dialog for clipart that was installed with MS Office. OR click “online” to go to... STEP 1 Open MS Wordord and click STEP 3 through the following: On Microsoft’s webpage, you can search for photos, Insert > Picture > Clip Art... clip art, images, and even video. All of it is for public use! Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  13. 13. You can create designs in MS WORD that rival those of professionals. Images One of the most important things to know about designing posters in MS Word is how to take control of your images. You can do a lot from the “Format Picture” dialog. You can bring up this dialog in many ways: double click on the image, OR right click on the image and select “Format Picture” (see right), OR click on the format picture icon in one of your toolbars (see below right). This will bring up a dialog box with five options along the top: Colors and Lines, Size, Layout, Picture and Text Box. An example of the “Layout tab” is below, but play around with the other options to discover new effects. (If you are working with text boxes, lines, or other shapes in MS Word, you can also bring up these same options and control them in different ways.) You can crop your images with the “crop” icon button on one of your MS Word Toolbars. The crop button gives you a new pointer with your mouse that allows you to work directly on the image. If you’ve ever had the problem of not You can rearrange and being able to put an image EXACTLY reorder images so that where you wanted to on a page, this they overlap each other is where you can solve it. By chang- or text. You can change ing these options, you can have your which is “in front” and text “wrap” or flow around the image, which is “behind.” and you can have the text in front of or behind the image. This will also “free” your image so you can place it anywhere you want to on the page. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  14. 14. you don’t have to have access to fancy PRINTING to design outside 8.5x11 Printing on sizes other than 8.5 x 11 Almost all commercial copiers can accommodate paper sizes larger than your standard letter paper. The largest size if known as “tabloid” or 11 x 17. Tabloid-size is equivalent to pieces of letter-sized paper placed side-by-side. If you want to design on 11 x 17, you can change your paper size in most programs under the “File > Page Setup” menu. If you are using a home printer, you likely cannot print on tabloid-sized paper. Instead, consider using legal-sized paper. Legal-sized paper is 8.5 x 14 and is the same width as letter-sized paper, but adds an extra 3 inches to the length. Legal size paper works on virtually every printer that can accommodate letter-sized paper. Printing in Color If you are not lucky enough to have access to a color copier, you can go to your campus copy shop, or a dedi- cated copy business such as Kinko’s or the UPS Store to get your posters printed. 11 x 17 color posters cost approximately 60-80 cents each. For all-hall or campus-wide programs, it may be worth this extra cost. If you don’t have the budget for large color posters, or the access, consider printing it from your own printer on a slightly smaller size, like the legal-sized paper referenced above. Remember: The best designs don’t always have to be in color or on larger-format paper. Regardless of what printers and copiers you have access to, you can still design eye-catching posters. Letter Size 8.5 x 11 Legal Size 8.5 x 14 Tabloid Size 11 x 17 (two pieces of letter paper combined) Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  15. 15. When it comes to design, there are a few... DON’Ts I will hunt you down for bad design. Don’t crowd posters with a lot of text that people don’t need to know. “White space” or “blank space” on a poster can be a wonderful thing. Used appropriately, it adds to the flow of the poster and is pleasing to the eye. Sometimes you may really want to use five or six pieces of clip art that you love, but one or two might look better. Remember your K.I.S.S. rules when designing a poster: Keep It Simple, Stupid! PIXELATED Photos Photographs can be tricky objects to work with. Because they are raster-based images, they often do not enlarge well. When working with photos, be careful not to enlarge them TOO much so that hey are unrecognizable. Be especially careful with photos from the web. Web images are meant to be small so they load fast. They often do not reproduce well in printed form. Don’t stretch photos. Hold the “Control” or sometimes “Shift” button to keep them in proportion when you resize them. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  16. 16. When it comes to design, there are a few... DON’Ts I will hunt you down for bad design. Over-used fonts Certain fonts are SO commonly used (use sparingly) that they lose their effectiveness in our posters. Try using an Artistic font Comic Sans MS for a title and then various san serif or serif’ed fonts for the remainder of Courier the poster. There are many fonts that Others? Jokerman/MaxCircus are similar to the standard “Arial” and “Times New Roman” that can add that extra touch to your designs. art Word and Publishe r templates and clip Microsoft Publisher and Microsoft Word have both revolutionized the way we make posters. They now include many templates and wizards that practically design the poster for you. Unfortunately, with this ease of use comes standardization. Common graphics and clip-art from Microsoft programs can become “invisible” or look “amateurish.” Pizza tonight. White paper/Courier font 7:00 This is the most common type of 2-minute slap-it-up-on- the-wall-type poster. Avoid it. Good posters don’t have to Lobby. take a long time. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  17. 17. Make your presentations STICKIER to make your posters memorable! Simple. If everything is important then nothing is important. If everything is priority then nothing is priority. You must be ruthless in your efforts to simplify — not dumb down — your message to its absolute core. We’re not talking about shallow sound bites here. Every idea — if you work hard enough — can be reduced to it bare essential meaning. For your poster, what’s the key point? What’s the core? Why does (should) it matter? For your visuals the mantra is: Maximum effect, minimum means. Unexpectedness. You can get people’s interest by violating their expectations. Surprise people. Surprise will get their interest. But to sustain their interest you have to stimulate their curiosity. The best way to do that is to pose questions or open up holes in people’s knowledge and then fill those holes, say the authors. Make the audience aware that they have a gap in their knowledge and then fill that gap with the answers to the puzzle (or guide them to the answers). Take people on a journey of discovery. Concrete. Speak of concrete images not of vague notions. Proverbs are good, say the authors, at reducing abstract concepts to concrete, simple, but powerful (and memorable) language. For example, we might say “kill two birds with one stone.” Easier than saying something like “…let’s work toward maximizing our productivity by increasing efficiency across depart- ments,” etc. And the phrase “…go to the moon and back” by JFK (and Ralph Kramden before him)? That’s concrete. You connect with that. Adapted from the book, “Made to Stick” by Chip and Dan Heath. Images taken and text modified from a summary on the “Presentation Zen” blog: Garr Reynold’s website is an excellent resource for making better presentations. He is also coming out with a book soon. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  18. 18. Make your presentations STICKIER to make your posters memorable! Credible. Put on the mood lighting. Make sure your poster design is appro- priate to the content of the program. A poster about a lecture on genocide around the world will look very different from a poster advertising an ice cream social. Advertise experts that might be present at the program. Choose images and clip art from actual real-world experiences. A quick powerful quote displayed prominently on the poster or a snap statistic may help lend to your credibility. Emotion. People are emotional beings. It is not enough to take people through a laundry list of program details, you must make them feel something. There are a million ways to help people feel something about your content. Images, of course, are one way to have audiences not only understand your point better but also to feel and to have a more visceral and emotional connection to your idea. We make emotional connections with people not abstractions. When possible put your ideas in human terms. For example, when creating a poster for a peer group health program on nutrition, Instead of using a picture of a food pyramid, a picture (or verbal description) of an enormous plate of greasy French fries stacked high, a double cheese burger (extra cheese), and a large chocolate shake (extra whip cream) is visceral and sticky. Story. We tell stories all day long. It’s how humans have always commu- nicated. We tell stories with our words and even with our art. We express ourselves through the stories we share. We teach, we learn, and we grow through stories. Why do our posters just detail time, date and location? Great ideas and great posters have an element of story to them. Stories get our attention and are easier to remember than lists of rules. Adapted from the book, “Made to Stick” by Chip and Dan Heath. Images taken and text modified from a summary on the “Presentation Zen” blog: Garr Reynold’s website is an excellent resource for making better presentations. He is also coming out with a book soon. Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  19. 19. learn how to best COMMUNICATE with your audience People can: Speak at 150-200 words per minute (wpm) Hear at 450-600 wpm People forget: 66% of what they hear within 24 hours of hearing it once. People remember: 11% of what they hear 30% of what they see 50% of what they see and hear 70% of what they do 90% of what they say and do 7% of ALL communication is verbal 93% of ALL communication is non-verbal. 38% = voice and gestures 55% = non-verbal During a typical 16-hour day, people spend 70% (11 hours) of their time communicating. The breakdown of that communication is: 45% = listening = 5 hours 30% = speaking = 3 hours 16% = reading = 2 hours 9% = writing = 1 hour Taken from “Understanding Communication” @ Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  20. 20. A whole ALPHABET of ideas to kick-start your brain. A Commercial break during a program Add a letter to the program title on a bulle- Contact paper signs up in the showers tin board each day Create a slogan Advertise on related items Crossword puzzle Advertise on stairs Cut out shapes and use them as the back- Announce programs at Hall Council ground for posters and announcements Announce the next program at a current D program Decorate prior to the program Arrows on the floor leading to the program Decorate a cake with the program informa- B tion Backwards signs Dial-An-Event Hotline Bake something before the program Diorama Balloons with the event information on Display case them Door knob hangers Bang trash can lids in the hallways before Door prizes the program Door-to-door visits Banners Dramatization Bathroom publicity Drawing Bathroom stall doors Dress in costume Blacklight advertisements Drinking Fountain signs Body paint E Bookmarks Early arrival prizes Bribe with food Elevator messages Brochures E-Mail Announcements Build human signs F Bulletin Boards Fake dollar bills with program information Bumper stickers on the back Buttons Fancy borders C Finger paint signs Cartoons Flags Ceiling signs Floor meetings Celebrity spokespersons Floor signs Certificates of attendance Fluorescent paper Chain phone calls Food Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  21. 21. A whole ALPHABET of ideas to kick start your brain. Footprints on the floor leading to the pro- Notices under clocks gram O Foreign language signs Offer rewards and incentives for attending Fortune cookies Oversized items Frisbees P G Paint windows Giant sized calendars on the wall Paper towel ads Give away items Perform a skit in the lobby Glitter Personal invitations H Post notices near frequently used items (TV, Hand out admission tickets to the program microwave) Hang signs in unusual places Posts-its all around the hall Helium balloons Put announcements inside balloons and I invite people to pop them Insert flyers into the Student newspaper Q Inside washers and dryers Questions Invite faculty or staff to attend Quotations J R Jam out to music in the lobby Reverse signs hung across from mirrors K RHA Knock door-to-door Ribbons with program information on them Run a piece of Yarn from doors to the pro- L gram Ladder or puzzle signs Life-sized people cutouts S Lopsided signs Sandwich boards Magazine cut outs Scavenger hunts Make-up your own word or catch phrase Send personal invitations Megaphone Show a pre-event video Motorized RC car with advertisement on it Shower signs in zip-loc bags Music Sidewalk chalk Mystery guests Silent voicemails Singing telegrams N Stickers Newsletters Streamers Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown
  22. 22. A whole ALPHABET of ideas to kick-start your brain. T Table tents Tear off flyers Teasers Three dimensional signs Tickets Toilet paper ads Trophies T-Shirts U Under door advertisements Unusual items used to make signs Upside down flyers and posters Use pictures of RAs, residents and administrators V Very large or very small print Vicious rumors W White board messages Window displays Wrap announcements on candy or gum Write a poem Write on bathroom tile with dry erase marker (be careful) Write on mirrors with a dry erase marker (be careful) X Xamine your audience Y Yard signs Z Zero in on one word to describe the program Designing Outside 8.5x11 | Paul G. Brown