Analogue design in an age of digital

We were absolutely thrilled when Graphic Designer Kerry Leslie agreed to join the Represent Team to help us develop the design work for this project. Kerry has produced bold, eye-catching and distinctive branding for a whole host of community heritage projects, exhibitions and community initiatives.

From the outset, she was drawn to the wonderful array of typography shown through political campaign literature from the period.

The period following WW1, of course, was an age of mass production of leaflets, pamphlets and posters. A pre-digital era of paper sales on streets and distribution of flyers at meetings, rallies and street stalls. The printing press played a massive role in helping political campaigners, of all political stripes, to get their message out.

Kerry has chosen to explore traditional printing techniques in designing our logo and leaflets for this project. We’re excited to reveal them soon, but in the meantime, here is an excerpt from her recent blogpost to get you excited!

Represent Project – Peoples Heritage Cooperative & The Active Wellbeing Society

April 5, 2019

New project klaxon! I’ve been commissioned by the People’s Heritage Co-operative and The Active Wellbeing Society to work on an 18 month / three-phase design project for ‘Represent’. I plan on documenting my work on the project as we go.

Last week (Weds 27th March) I had my first visit to the Wolfson Centre for Archival Research on the fourth floor at the Library of Birmingham – I can’t share the archival images due to copyright restrictions – however the Wolfson centre is open to the public and is free of charge so you can go and explore yourself! You just need to request an appointment in advance and bring along ID. I loved looking through 100 year old printed materials and it has given me a lot of ideas for the direction the identity and preliminary stages of the design.

This week (Thurs 5th April) I visited my friend’s traditional printing workshop The Holodeck in Digbeth, as a starting point for the identity design and also to discuss producing a promotional flyer to tell people about this project / how they can get involved / follow the updates. The Holodeck has a number of vintage printing presses including an Arab press which is the kind of press which would have been used to print the parliamentary posters / printed ephemera we were looking through in the archives last week. Joseph also has an extensive collection of wooden block type sets which have decorative blocks / flourishes – these are stunning pieces of design and I hope to feature them – especially as most of the records that we were looking through are text based and have decorative borders.