AIM Poster | December 2010

Guidelines: Investigate a specific social or cultural issue starting with a single word. Design a poster based on your research into the word, associated imagery and the larger issue at hand.

Original size: 20" x 30"

This poster comments on the fact that the government spends more money fighting wars than on medical research. The government uses 19 times more of our tax dollars funding death rather than saving lives. I used the word "aim" to play off the idea of aiming guns, and to enforce the idea of aiming at the right cause. The scene is dark at first glance but becomes playful as you realize there are toy army men in the image. I chose to use toys in the image so the violence of war would not be prominent. This way, the focus is on the idea of fighting breast cancer rather than on war itself. I made the letter ā€˜iā€™ out of pink ribbon so the viewer would see the pink ball in the middle of the poster as a symbol of breast cancer.

My Process: The idea for my image concept started with my wanting to show war without the gore and explosions that are common of war images, so that the focus would not be on the war itself, but on the idea of fighting breast cancer. Inspiration hit when I was looking through pictures of my younger cousins. I thought about how children view war, and how it is filtered in their eyes. To them, war is portrayed through the green army men they play with. That's exactly what I wanted in my poster; a filtered version of war, as if being viewed by a child. I began sketching out my poster with green army men and created a crude mock-up in Photoshop using images I grabbed from google. I then had to figure out how to recreate a cancer cell. I went to Meijer and checked the craft section for something to make a cancer cell. After finding nothing there, I went to buy a bucket of green army men for my poster in the toy section and came across a pink Koosh ball. Perfect! But how to make it look imperfect like a cancer cell? Silly string! I went home and arranged the toys how I wanted, found the best angle, the most dramatic lighting, and made some photo magic. This is the most fun I've had making a piece. I got to play with toys, photography, and typography!