Typographic Circus

Design Communication 1: Circus Poster Books

The aim of this project block, alongside complementary tasks in the Visual Expression module, was to encourage experimental image-making, quick generation of ideas (15 minutes) and a sense of invention.

For this series of cut and paste exercises, students were introduced to the ’Typographic Circus’, where they were encouraged to express, through the arrangement of type characters, classic circus acts such as the Tightrope Walker, The Flying Trapeze, Performing Elephants and the Hall of Mirrors. They were given several sheets of large printed type characters to use (in black only).

The posters, devoid of colour or tone, encouraged the students to focus on the potential of type to be arranged or manipulated into various shapes or configurations to illustrate the circus act.

The posters were so successful in communicating the essence of the words that the teaching team decided to ask the students to make their collection of eight posters into mini books. The images were scanned to fit the page size, before being folded together from a single sheet of paper.

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