Once the event planning wheels started rolling towards implementation, it became necessary to start handing out communication items to the target party participants. Layers upon layers of required party specifics started to come to light that defined what the party should be, where it should be and how the party will be started to manifest clearly.
However, these publications promoting the party needed to be first studied, in order to produce preliminary work that would bring out the necessary as well as important aesthetic elements in the ads that would pique maximum interest without giving away too much. Besides, one needs to impress people that you know what you are doing.
I came up with five teaser studies that incorporated five different designs that tied up to one goal, which is to announce to people that an important event will be happening in the next couple of weeks or so. I made sure that each study is reviewable, elements were renewable in future designs and conveyed that a specific date needed to be blocked off and saved in their calendars.
Study #1: An ensemble of cocktail party quotes
For this study, I came up with a typographic design peppered with famous party quotes (especially cocktail ones). I took a quote from the legendary Andy Warhol and made this the main quote that emphasized what one may expect from the event being teased.
For this design, I used typewriter font type, created a couple of paper textures (carbon paper as well as a normal bond) and the date information and meshed them together to resemble an old-school type of communique.
Study #s 2 and 3: The grunge look
Grunge was the basic theme for the next couple of studies. The informal look kinda clashed with the "formality" of the event being teased but there's no minus points for venturing into unconventional territory. On one hand there are schools of (design) thought that believe that being conventional will always be quintessential and deliver the message about-face and on the other there are those that nevertheless veer away from the conventional as this is perceived to be "boring" and "uninspired" and it's better to be edgy and cutting-edge. For me personally I believe in having one foot in one and the other foot in the other.
For the second study (see above) I intentionally used a single image (of a girl in a party costume) as I intended for this to be a powerful way of letting viewers use their creative minds (people in my department are like that) in using their imagination to form their impressions on the upcoming event. Formal typography and clean diagonal lines were used in order to soften the majority of the design elements that were grimy and edgy.
With the next one (see below) I dropped all hints of subtlety and gave a more "thorough" description of the event by incorporating images common to cocktail parties, which are cocktail drinks.
I added a silhouette of a city skyline with rays of "sunlight" to complete the look and give the impression that participants can party from evening to the wee hours of the morning.
Study #s 4 and 5: Get your facts straight, this will be a cocktail party
With the last mentioned study, I gradually peeled away the layer of mystery with the planned event. For the last two for these set of studies, I violently stripped away this layer and left a little to the targeted audience's imagination.
For the fourth study, I made the image of a cocktail drink as the centerpiece of the design and made the background a deep black in order to draw the audience to the phrase commonly associated with cocktail parties as well as to the said image. I added wavy lines (using Adobe Illustrator) so as to give that sci-fi look and feel (of that medium I am very fond of). This was admittedly and arguably the best of the bunch in terms of creative output as the next and last one came off uninspired, to say the least.
The fifth and last one ventured into Captain Obvious territory in terms of the design as admittedly there were hints of Star Wars and Terminator as a couple of films from each franchise were recently viewed by me prior to working on this particular study and therefore kind of "influenced" the design process.
After finishing all of these, all that was left was to submit these concepts for review by my team in order to start finalizing the posters that will be rolled out (one each) for the next three weeks left in the work schedule before showtime.
To be continued...