Exercise: Museum posters


You have been asked to produce three illustrations be used as part of a series of A3 posters to publicise the museum to the following audiences:

  • Child aged 5-9
  • Teenager 13-16
  • General adult audience

“Select one object for each of the audiences and create an image centred around that object in a way which you think best presents it to your market.

Due to the coronavirus situation, I was unable to visit any of the museums that I had in mind to complete this exercise. That being the case, I decided to look at exhibitions at one of my favourite museums, the National History Museum in London. As the museum had been closed for a while, it was difficult to find individual exhibitions. I was, however, able to find several presentations tailored to themes that were previously held at the museum.

My chosen exhibits for each age range are as follows

Before creating a poster for each age, I created a spider diagram, breaking down the interests of each group:

Poster for Child aged 5-9

I thought this exhibit/event suited the audience perfectly. Being a father of children to this age group myself, I can fully appreciate the sense of adventure and excitement that a sleepover can provide. This coupled with a location such as the Natural History Museum and then throw dinosaurs into the mix, I was excited to start on this illustration.

After researching the event, I created some very quick sketches to get an idea of a layout for my illustration.

I really liked the idea of using the main hall as a backdrop to the illustration. It is instantly recognisable with the main staircase and grand design of the window arches.

Main Stairs at the NHM London

I tried to look at previous Dino Snore Sleepover posters to get an idea of how this event had been marketed, but could only find one as I believe this quite a recent event. The illustration is very well composed, but I do feel that the younger end of the audience may look at it and feel frightened due to the expression on the girls face. I believe that my illustration, especially for the age range, should show more of an adventure. I think that depicting a mass sleepover with a less terrifying subject would make for a better message.

Previous Marketing Illustration for NHM London

Working off my quick sketch ideas, I immediately warmed to the idea of a dinosaur taking part in the sleepover. I decided to progress with the concept of a t-rex sleeping at the bottom of the NHM main stairs, using the archways and windows as a backdrop. I thought it was an excellent idea to have the kids in sleeping bags curled up with the dinosaur, giving it the image of a protector/ally.

Initial Quick Sketch
Basic Line Work
Final Poster

This was my chosen design for my finished artwork. I feel that this poster speaks to its intended demographic with a sense of adventure. The backdrop of the NHM main stairs sets an excellent context to the narrative. I thought it necessary to create a character out of the T-rex to show the audience a level of security. I’m also happy with the overall look of the lighting and use of colour, the moon and stars also work well, and the titles really pop with the contrasting orange.

If I was to create the poster again, I would almost certainly spend more time on the character detail. I’m happy with the dinosaur, but the children and their positions could be improved. I would also include more character onto the main floor and maybe even throughout the image. It would be nice to see more children investigating the museum.

Time lapse of Final Design

Next, I was the “Wildlife Photographer of the year” exhibition. I created some quick thumbnails looking at possible I ideas and layouts. I liked the idea of a camera lens, capturing an animal and playing around with a possible reflection in the glass.

I moved towards the idea of a camera lens peering out of some grass to capture an exciting animal. I started by creating the lens in Adobe Illustrator, I then coloured an imported my design into photoshop. For time purposes, I rehashed an old image of a bear that I had created and used photoshop to mash the elements together and create the final image.

Timelapse of Bear drawing

This was the more difficult of the three posters to create. I found it hard to visualise how the end result would look. In all I think, the idea would work well if progressed, although I found it hard to create a fitting subject.

The last of my designs was for the exhibition “Crime Scene Live”. Like the previous posters, I set about creating some quick sketches to see what worked well.

I thought that this poster should be a lot darker than the others as it was for an older age range and the subject matter was quite adult. After working through some ideas and taking inspiration from the NHM advert for this exhibition, I decided to create a poster with a central skull, surrounded by weapons that may be used in crimes.

As a client visual, I think this image works well. If repeating the exercise I would have maybe incorporated more items behind the skull and repositioned the tile slightly in order to fit more on the screen. I like the font and feel this works really well with the theme. I think the client would see that if progressed with more detail, this would prove an intriguing image.

I feel that these posters work well side by side. The branding of the titles and information gives the audience knowing that they are all from the same museum. I am happy with the choice of font for each poster, and fell the colour choice for each one is suitable for the intended viewers.