Posters surround our everyday life. They tell stories, give visual identity and provide a news source for society. The beauty of posters as a visual aid is to identify images and messages, with that graphic design playing wonders in front of our eyes.
During World War Two propaganda posters were everywhere – woah what a jump right?
Well I’ll explain the jump. It’s good to get to the point. Which are exactly what posters do: that rectangular size encasing a message that’ll be read only a few times, sealing the content and making that first impression of brilliance.
Also, because they’re blooming beautiful to look at. Design wise, illustration wise… you name it – they weren’t meant to be seen as a beautiful design but they’re certainly recognised in style now and re-designed through our modern day world.
We all know that slogan that’s been used maybe a little too much.
Imparting immediate and forceful images and messages, posters were used in a variety of ways: as an appeal to patriotism and to create a realisation for homeowners.
The ‘Dig For Victory’ campaign was started in Britain one month after the outbreak of war. It encouraged everyone to grow their own food, and was all thanks to the ministry of Agriculture. ‘The little man with the spade’ is a very symbolic poster that was used to help promote the dig for victory campaign. By illustrating a small boy on the poster holding a spade suggested that it was not only the old, but also the young to be part of it.
‘Use spades not ships. Grow your own food and supply your own cookhouse’ is the most striking poster from the Second World War. The simplicity is amazing, with the idea of using a spade and a ship joined together in conflict. The communication of how it will really make a difference is represented in such a symbolic image. It makes the homeowners aware of the underlined meaning of ‘Dig For Victory’ – the more you grow the more ships can bring in weapons and not food, which would make Britain’s fight stronger in the war.
We are now living through a period similar, but less harsh, than the one throughout wartime. Instead of fighting countries, the main battle is combating economic recession in the UK. It brings back what all the propaganda posters were saying about not wasting and the government urging the public to grow more food – not throw out waste and to recycle.
Clearly it is not as extreme, but there are definitely similarities between the past and present.
Wasting food has become apparent in our world today. The government urge people to put their household waste into compost bins, which then recreates soil, which can be scattered over your garden. Even recycling is a big deal now as people have had reality shocks of there it goes and what happens with it all. Many new items are being made out of the old, which was current to the wartime too.
There were a wide variety of posters, which equally connected to a niche audience, but overall covered everyone who had anything to do with the War.
What posters have you seen recently that makes a stand out impression to you? A poster that significantly alters your perception to the government or the way that you are in a day-to-day life?
Posters are there to gauge your attention and encourage interaction, from food shortages to the economic crises of today. The beauty of poster design will stay strong throughout print.