When you’re designing a poster there is always constraints. Corporate colour palettes to follow, essential information to communicate and brand personality are all defining elements which you have to bear in mind. That is not to say that your creativity should be held back. Here is a collection of posters that are both effective and at the same time undeniably beautiful. Whether it’s through the use of colour, illustration, spatial awareness or iconography, this selection of creatively conceptualised posters are a source of inspiration to all – whether you keep them purely for reference or decide to showcase them on your wall.
Jason Munn is a hugely respected designer known for his creative gig posters for bands such as Death Cab for Cutie, Camera Obscura and Best Coast. Here we see an example of his work for the group Deerhoof, displaying stunning use of overlaid colours, impeccable shade selection and a keen eye for iconic type.
This gorgeous example by Nick Dewar for ReadyMade draws heavily on the iconic, populist poster art of the 1930s. Best known for his cover design for the novel The Devil Wears Prada, Dewar sadly passed away in 2010, leaving a legacy of stunning designs and beautifully colourful illustration.
This poster by Otl Aicher proves that beautiful doesn’t necessarily mean busy. In an attempt to display man-made beauty, the poster exemplifies the art-deco fascination with the machine perfectly. Bold choice yet restrained use of colour, effortlessly elegant imagery and impeccable balance make this an unforgettably powerful, intimidating and incredibly handsome creative example.
Rich in colour and detail, this stunning example is by designer Scott Hansen. Produced for the Obama presidential campaign, it features an unrestrained colour palette that in less experienced hands could prove overwhelming. Instead, through smart placement, Hansen creates harmony within the design that inspires a sense of emotion and community.
In complete contrast, this example by Kuala Lumpur-based designer Marcus, shows just how beautiful monochrome can be. Based on the movie Batman Begins, the fluid silhouette of the hero, combined with the outline of the birds – which seem to grow from his cloak – is simply stunning.
This retro poster for Coca Cola uses muted colours and imagery to take you back to the good old days of its 1950s popularity peak. It’s iconic, eye catching and simultaneously gentle; encapsulating an era with a few choice design designs.
Shepard Fairey is a world renowned artist whose work graces the walls of the National Gallery in Washington DC. His posters contains a distinctly Marxist style, along with elements of graffiti, pop art and appropriation art. These themes can clearly be seen in this poster, created to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Peace Corps.
Kevin Tong is an illustrator working in Los Angeles. This poster is as beautiful as it is disturbing, displaying masterful application of colour, illustration and concept. It’s little wonder his prints sell out within minutes of going online.
Clip art may be sneered on within the design community, but this poster shows just how creative it can actually be. Enhanced by a vivid colour palette and black background that helps the white outlines pop off the page, It’s cute, kitsch and worthy of any wall.
Take a look at the skilful illustration in this example. With influence from Ladybird children’s classics and old-school recipe books it’s wholesome, organic and good enough to eat.