Ah, student debt. Everyone loves the topic; especially me. That's why I was happy to design a poster that was intended to politically mobilize the people suffering under the student debt crisis—particularly those who have graduated or are near to it.
As it was intended to be shown in the streets, as a sort of “grassroots guerrilla campaign”, I considered what would contrast with the colors one would be likely to find in that environment.
Speaking of contrast, I developed a concept of two color “tiers”. The first is the brighter oranges, which catch the viewers attention with elements, like overdue bills, that evoke the anxieties surrounding student debt.
The second is the darker blues, which reveal the uplifting solutions of collective action and become apparent once the viewer's attention is caught and they're looking at the poster.
Now back to contrast: I struggled to strike a balance within the blues. I made them much too subtle, emphasizing the “once they're looking at it” part a little too much; they would really have had to look to notice!
Some feedback from my peers and quick color-block mockups on example images of intended environs from the web set me straight, though.
My research for this project showed that vulnerable populations were the most affected by the student debt crisis. Shocking, I know.
So I drew in influences from contemporary populist media, urban political street art, and the revolutionary artwork of Russian Constructivism. Not only are they typically appealing to the more vulnerable of us, but they're also great at stirring passion into action.