Creating a Carnival

Colour, light, mystery and energy – welcome to the wonderful world of this year Nelson Arts Festival. This year the festival imagery, which is initially seen by the general public on the programme cover, needed to evoke the idea of a carnival. The process of coming up with this imagery was an absolute blast – we have shared some of the creative process here.

After receiveing the brief from the Nelson Festivals team to create a cover image that reflected the carnival theme of the festival, we jumped right into finding inspiration that would get our creative juices flowing. This included at looking at characters from old movies (Zoltar from the film Big); antique carnival posters from the 1930s; the television show Carnivale; and various other places of inspiration.



We then started coming up with ideas on the computer – seeing what shapes, colours, and textures would best create an identity for the festival.


Concept 1, 2 and 3


At this point we presented these ideas to the Nelson Festivals team (the client) and they provided feedback on what they liked and didn’t like. From this point we then got our headspace out of the computer, went down to the local costume shop (big thank you to Just Costumes in Hardy Street) and hired a pink tutu, printed out some of the concepts, cut them up and started to photograph them with the tutu. We felt that the images needed more life, energy and light – so put the tutu onto our overhead projector, and experimented!

Photo Experiments


We now had a new direction to take the cover design: light and dark areas were created by the overhead projector shining through the bright pink tutu, and it inspired a number of new ideas. We presented another set of concepts to the Nelson Festivals team.

Concept 4 and 5


From this point we worked closely with the Nelson Festivals team, making final tweaks and changes. We came up with something that looks great, creates an identity for the festival and something everyone can be proud of.

The Final Programme Design





For more information on the Nelson Arts Festival 2012 please visit their website.

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