Above: Posters on display in the hallways
of the Visual Communication Design studio,
University of Alberta
Canadian designers are not often widely noted for contributing to the design scene in North America and yet many of them are influential, having made large contributions to the design community in Canada and abroad.
The objective for students in this project was to heighten students and their classmates’ awareness of visual communication design in Canada. They researched a Canadian designer that they had been assigned (from the list below), explored their work as being influential in the history of Canadian visual communication design and then visualized their research in the form of an poster or display that is in the style of the designer’s work.
Students then designed a poster which visually communicated all aspects of their own content.
The design of the final poster was designed in the style of the designer that they studied. For example, use a very illustrative style for a type designer that illustrates by hand. The final piece was mounted on black foam core for inclusion in a class display. The final poster was 16”w x 20”h.
Below is a list of the designers that were provided and some of the best design solutions.
This project was developed by Judy Armstrong, CGD and Gillian Harvey, CGD instructors in the Department of Art and Design at the University of Alberta. It was inspired by existing projects done by students about Canadian designers over the years.
These students were part of the Systems and Concepts class in the Bachelor of Design program in the Department of Art and Design, University of Alberta. In this course, students explore systems approaches to work and there is an emphasis on concept development, critical thinking, typography and information design.
Paul Arthur FGDC
Allan Fleming FGDC
Burton Kramer FGDC
Stuart Ash FGDC
Jim Donahue and Ralph Tibbles
David Berman FGDC
Carl Dair FGDC
Rod McDonald FGDC
Jim Rimmer FGDC
Images / Student designer
Don Watt – by Melody Zhou
David Coates FGDC – by Kim Vanderhalm
Burton Kramer FGDC – by James Barone
Carl Dair FGDC – by Linnea Lapp
Marion Bantjes – by Joe Watterson
Gillian Harvey CGD, MA (UK) is an Information Design instructor at the Department of Art and Design, U of A. A project-based art director, her core capabilities include clear language, data visualization, standards and procedural information, way finding and typography.