Simple idea gets to the heart of the matter

Tim Ashton is executive creative director of Bates Dorland>

Like most of the posters you see, this selection is variable. The majority of posters are merely competent; a few rise above that; some are dreadful.

Nike abides by the rules established throughout the campaign, though it is a comparatively weak execution compared with some in the series. Orange, on the other hand, is a bit of a cop-out. Some of its posters have been fantastic, particularly the Adshel with just the percentage sign and “covered”.

The political posters in the past few months have been fairly dreadful, with the exception of “Demon Eyes”, which had a strong visual. I like this Labour execution because it is not trying too hard, it’s straight, it just says: “Here’s a picture of the bloke, this is what he says.” Most of the time, we are all trying to use as many techniques as possible on posters; this stands out because it has no puns and no “tricksy” visuals.

The British Heart Foundation is a strong poster, coping with a difficult brief and a huge subject – my only criticism is that it doesn’t tell me how to “fight it”. Does it want me to send money or become a doctor? The whole campaign has developed a strong, simple, graphic style that borrows from the earliest form of advertising, before photography and visual technology, going right back to the painted board – a style the organisation should adopt through the line in its communications.


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