Six Word Poster Assignment

Today was our deadline for producing and printing our own six word story posters.  David had given us the task of creating a six word poster utilising hybrid typefaces of our choice to convey visually, as well as typographically a Roald Dahl book.  The only restrictions were that we must use two typefaces, one serif and one san-serif and that we must not produce imagery.  This task was designed to highlight what we had learned so far.


My poster explored the story of The Twits (1980), which tells the story of a cruel and vindictive couple who abuse animals and are aggressive to local children.  The story comes to head, literally, when after being driven mad by deception, the two are tricked into standing on their heads and being stuck there until they vanish into nothing.

My six words took a huge amount of preparation and numerous drafts.  Until a late stage of the project, I was actually going to do my poster on the book Matilda (1988).  I took a poll of the class, however, and this was the winner.

The creation of my poster was a muddled affair.  After being forced to go home over the weekend, my only resource was Adobe Photoshop, meaning half of the poster was done on that platform while the first part, on Adobe Illustrator.  I feel that having to overcome this taught me a lot, however.

My chosen fonts were  Bodoni 72 Oldstyle (serif) and Lao MN (sanserif).  I chose them for their jagged and slightly cold appearance, as I thought it fit the tone I was aiming for.  Incidentally, neither are available on my version of Adobe Photoshop, which caused a huge delay as I had to find poor quality examples on the internet and recolour them by hand.  Luckily it is not immediately visible to the eye, so I think I got away with it.

My first word doesn’t contain much descriptive power and so I simply tried my hand at meshing together my two fonts in whatever creative ways I could.  The second word, and most profound, was done by a combination of overlaying both typefaces upon one another and deforming some typefaces while adding serifs in at strange angles to give a tortured and grim feel.  I also elongated the letter-forms to make them appear stretched and gruesome.

My first happy accident came with the word ‘turned‘ when I accidentally duplicated the type and found it gave a blurred effect such as when a person’s view when they spin.  The last line was meant to illustrate the sinking, imploding forms of the two Twits as they began to disappear.  The last touch was another happy accident.  When attempting to invert the text, I inadvertently inverted the colour balance, and I decided it lent a darker texture to the poster as well as highlighting the finer details of the lettering.


Author: David Rothwell

I am a Graphic Communication student at Cardiff Metropolitan School of Art and Design If you like any of my work, have feedback (good or bad) or would like to get in touch, please do

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