The Other… Theatre Poster – (City Sketch & Billy With His Boots On)

A couple more theatre pieces.

This first one is the most recent, designed for a great new theater and cultural space here in Hull – The Other Space (I just have to mention the photos on that link reminded me how much I enjoyed Tom Wells’ play “Cosmic” – brilliant!).

Oh, and you can find The Other Space on Twitter too – @e52otherspace

So… the poster.

The Other Space - FINAL 001 - A3 - for blogFinal Poster Art

For me, “City Sketch” started off with the idea that this theatre company had been set up, and “unfolded” to fill an existing space, and had the possibility to fold/pack up and appear anywhere.

Thumbnail and Sketch

The process was fairly rapid and from my initial rough thumbnails, through to what this time was certainly a more elaborate detail sketch than I usually produce.

To be fair, looking at the the final art, it didn’t change too much from that initial sketch.


The final Illustration was built in SketchUp, and then enhanced and worked over in Photoshop. Adding details like the cardboard boxes edges (not everywhere, no need, just enough to inform the eye and so the brain).

The Other Space - Image And City Sketch IllustrationArtwork Only

The content mentioned in the writers blurb for the flyer discusses ideas relating to the plot that suggested, to me, people “playing games” with other peoples lives, so the Cluedo style figures seemed within the scope of the brief.

The graphic at the rear of the image with headphones and a mountain range was based on the box content graphics (careful glassware etc.) that are found on cardboard boxes and meant to suggest “Sound Scape within”.

The footprints are intended to show the wandering of the audience from scene to scene, hence the footprints behind the newcomers walking up past “the OTHER SPACE” sign.

Above them and to the right are a pair of figures separated by love, or the absence of it as the bottom literally falls out of there relationship (the saw suggests a probable culprit however), the window suggests voyeurism of the audience as they watch this collapsing affair.

To their left in the board room the chart on the wall suggests the reaction to efficiency measures I’m sure we can all relate to considering the state of the union. The ideas, figures or plans of the blue suited power-brokers sit on a table that is supported by nothing but there own will, ready to collapse at any moment (y’know, it’s a metaphor).

Above those two sentinels in security badges look down upon their domain, supported by two CCTV cameras pointed at the other characters. The hair-bow and bow-tie imagery used stems from the natty little WC signs in the building that I liked. You see them when you go along to the show no doubt.

The whole box related imagery came out of the idea of a theatre company that has been somewhat transient but is now unpacking its wares in a new space, with the boxes perhaps folding out in different ways each time the audience sees something there. With the possibility of it all being folded down and taken somewhere else at the drop of a hat.

I also like the shadow, especially with the shadow arrow pointing to a dark mirror of the entrance, which could be suggestive of alternative spaces as yet to be revealed.

As far as practical considerations go, there needed to be layouts suitable for double-sided flyer at A5 (below) and A3 Poster (see top of page).

The Other Space  - Final Flyer - A5 small for blogArtwork for A5 Flyer – Front and Back

IMAG7294Early Print Tests – relative size of Flyers to Poster

Anyway, the whole thing has a different feel to my usual work, and has definitely been influenced by my work on my MA, especially the most recent Board Game related imagery.

…and thanks to Dave Eccles for the nudges and sharp intakes of breath regarding type and layout too (credit where its due and all that).

All in all I was really pleased with the image, from the slick look to the colours, its definitely a style I’ll exploit again.

You can find other imagery I’ve produced for these guys HERE:


The other poster that was doing the rounds recently was one for Middle Child Theatre (the guys who helped me out at Scratch earlier in the year), for Tom Needham’s play, Billy With His Boots On.


…a dystopian drama/realityTV parody that asks the audience to look at the mob and media lust for spectacle in the wake of the speculative reintroduction of the death penalty.

BillY Thumbnail

I developed the whole thing as always from a thumbnail image (probably inspired by my own take on the Poster for The Truman Show film), through to a finished (purposefully rough around the edges) design that incorporated TV and mobile phone imagery, with the raised fists of the mob, and the children’s game of hangman.

A game that often proves complete when the players get things wrong… yes, yet another metaphor.

Following a few discussions with the guys from Middle child we settled on this straight forward, tabloid news print influenced image, with the red header.

The first one of these didn’t work out, the type was straight of the Daily Mail, but didn’t fit with the red banner for obvious reasons, so I went the whole hog and plumped for something a little more News Of The World figuring the same vote that would bring back hanging would bring back that rag as well.

Screen shot 2013-08-02 at 15.21.19

I built The TV’s in Sketchup, (styling them after early 70’s style sets to go with the political thinking, flat screens just seemed a little too opulent and non-descript), then stacked them individually in the software and rolled the camera around for a while to choose the best viewpoint – Digital location scouting if you will – I then photographed my own arm several times holding fists or phones, drew the arms again and added stylised photography into the mix after throwing the lot into Photoshop.

And here it is in Hull Trucks Window…

Billy With HIs Boots On Poster

…and I believe the same design will be going off to the Edinburgh Fringe too!


So, there y’go, two, somewhat tangentially “games related” Theatre posters…

As the Bare Naked Ladies once said, “There’s nothing left that won’t cross over?“.

~ by hesir on August 2, 2013.

4 Responses to “The Other… Theatre Poster – (City Sketch & Billy With His Boots On)”

  1. sophisticated work, visually enticing!

  2. […] I actually worked on some posters a little while ago based on this principle, I made a blog post >HERE<. […]

  3. […] my involvement in other #Hull based Theatre projects see >HERE<, >HERE< & […]

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