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Opening Doors of Perception

Graphics Experience & Portfolio

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Publicity Officer - Durham Heads Up

Planning a speaker event to raise awareness about psychosis and signpost avenues of support, I wanted to make a poster that would arrest the attention of passerbys.

To guard against perpetuating false stereotypes about psychosis, I consulted with a fellow student about the symptoms of psychosis and the visual symptoms that can occur, and designed a corresponding poster, fragmenting a simple portrait outwards into a shattering of perspectives.

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Starting with the premise that Heads Up was going to have a documentary viewing focused on the media, and its impact on our perceptions of our physical form for Eating Disorder Awareness Week, I wanted to go for a more futuristic look.

A heavily filtered image of my camera in a mirror with overlaying text, detailing the time and location of the event, was the result with the Heads Up logo placed neatly in the corner.

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Having recruited a guest speaker for our event on recovery, I was hoping for an illuminating talk.

This thought developed quite literally and the poster became a photo of my halogen lightbulb, cropped and filtered with the contrast increased to bring the mesmerising patterns out more clearly. Again, the Heads Up logo was included to promote the society, and a minimalistic sans-serif font was used to underline the society's organisation.

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Having used the first term of 2017 to establish the society somewhat, the second term became a good opportunity to branch out and begin liaising with other societies to expand the society's reputation outwards. I therefore organised a show with Durham's improvised comedy society, Shellshock.

Armed with a housemate's teddy bear, a comforting reminder of the support Heads Up aims to provide, and a charger to represent the 'shock' in Shellshock, I created a well-lit, cheery backdrop upon which a poster was created.

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As a new society, Heads Up Durham needed a lot of publicity work. It was important to promote the society, its aims and means of contacting or following the society. I subsequently designed a bookmark to be distributed at events, and put up on bulletin boards around the university.

Against the bold orange of Student Minds, the student mental health charity that Heads Up Durham is affiliated with, I began with a more casual font, slanting 'raising' to reflect its meaning in its form. The gradient was then echoed midway through with a series of thin lines emanating from a single point like a ray of light, again bringing a positive vibe to the piece. Then followed a series of relevant situations which the society might be able to assist with, or provide information on.

At the bottom was a list of neatly arranged contact details – the society's Facebook, email, blog, and the Student Minds website. I also overlaid a watermark, adjusting the transparency, with the society's mascot, a meercat, having drawn it freehand and saved it as a raster graphics image. And finally at the bottom is the society's name and a brief description of it, framing the bookmark.

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Graphics Officer - Durham University English Society

Oops... something went wrong. As our first event coordinated by the new executive committee of the Durham University English Society, the garden party was our first opportunity to work together as a team.

Geared towards staff and students, the poster is set against a filtered background of the English Department's backyard where the event was to be held. A flourishing script is used to introduce the garden party itself in the style of an invitation, and the society's involvement is mentioned in a serif font for a more official effect.

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With Christmas approaching, the English Society organised F.R.O.S.T, the festive reading of seasonal tidbits. To reflect the more somber tones of winter, I darkened and blurred an image of the Durham marketplace featuring the Christmas tree, also allowing for increased visibility of the text. Layered speckles of white paint with an oversized air brush create the illusion of frost over a window while quiet pastels warm up the poster.

Once again, for a more sophisticated look, the description of the event is in a bold serif font, while the more crucial details at the bottom are in a sans-serif font for easy reading. The title, Frost, is dual-layered with a light cyan beneath a strong black, giving the poster a subtle pop.

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