Choosing the Poster

Before I chose Poster Idea #3 as the final poster for my film I wanted to make sure people agreed with me, so I took to Facebook to ask people opinions.

I did this by posting an album of the posters on Facebook and asking people to ‘like’ the one they liked the most and also commenting why they like it if they have time, as you can see below…

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Here are the results I received…

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The first poster idea received 4 likes suggesting it was moderately popular and that it appealed to some.

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This poster idea only received 2 likes suggesting it was not as popular as the other two, despite Justin’s comment of liking ‘the colour scheme and the “loose talk cost lives”‘ I feel this poster was not as successful as the other two and thus should be discounted.

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Poster 3 received 23 out of the 29 votes giving it a landslide victory and consolidated my opinion of which poster I should use for my film. Furthermore the comments below it also agreed with what I previously thought and really made me make my final decision

Overall doing this task has shown me that using social media to get peoples view is very handy. This has given me the confidence to say that Poster #3 is my firm choice for the one I will submit due to 23 other people agreeing with me.

– Jay



Poster Idea #3

IMG_1050It was a lovely evening so I decided to do some photography for my 3rd poster idea (which I had been putting off after the disappointing outcome of my last one), the result of which you can see below – most of it resembles a GCSE Photography project but I did manage to get one or two usable shots haha!

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And here are the shots I decided would work for my idea of the poster:


I thought this picture of the leaf would be good for the main focus of the poster as I really wanted a dead or dying autumn leaf to represent the mood, title & feel of my film ‘The French Leaves’


I ending up using this photo to provide a background texture to the poster – I shot it over exposed so it wouldn’t be too distracting. In photoshop I further increased the exposure so it was almost completely white apart from a few twigs and leaves which are slightly visible and just add to the general atmosphere of the poster.


I also used a number of stills and shots that I got on set to provide some more depth and excitement to the  background

This was my very crude sketch of what I wanted the poster to look like which I used as my starting point when constructing my poster in photoshop:



1. I got my picture of the leaf into photoshop and isolated it from the background using the ‘background removal tool’ and edited it to make it slightly more saturated and contrasted.

Screen Shot 2014-03-08 at 18.06.172. I then added the background which used the photo I had aforementioned and then used the ‘Brush’ tool to create a shadow around the leaf and a slight vignette around the sides just to make the leaf stand out further from the background

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3. I then added in the photos of the actors but made them black and white, increased the exposure and lowered the opacity to achieve the faded effect and so they didn’t draw attention away from the leaf/title

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4. I then added the title itself using the ‘American Typewriter font’ which I have used for all the films titling to keep consistency. I also added a drop shadow to the title to make it stand out further from the leafs patterning.

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5. Finally I added in the cast, crew and film information which I have previously spoken about in this blog.

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I make it sound so easy haha! But yer, that was my poster finished and here it is!


I’m really pleased with it and certainly prefer it to my other idea despite it not being in the WW2 style I wanted. I think it fits the psychological/drama genre of the film much better than my previous attempt. I can’t really think of any negatives for it as it was just how I envisioned it so I think unless I can come up with anything better this looks like the one!

– Jay


Poster Idea #2

So as I mentioned in the blog about my first poster design I wanted to try a design using the ‘poster within a poster’ so to speak as the full image of the poster. Here is what I came up with:


Although I thought this design would work much better, I think I prefer my previous attempt here is why…

  • It looks too messy, the picture is too distracting at that size and takes away from the titles and information
  • The colours are not attractive or eye catching and there is just too much going on
  • Its hard to tell which is the tag line or the title

So I’m going to have a go at a completely different design for my poster as I don’t think my last effort could be considered good enough for the final poster design. However there are a few things I’d like to take from this design which I like such as the titling, the positioning of the actors titles (which I based on American Beauty’s design as they are small and look very neat and tidy) and the new logo design for Manual Matic Media as it sticks out a lot more and is a lot more appealing.

So there we go, as Jay-Z says ‘onto the next one’

– Jay


Poster Idea #1

Here is a video of how I made the poster using Adobe’s Photoshop.

This is just the first idea for our poster, I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out however there are a number of things I’d like to try before I say this is the final thing.

the french leaves poster idea 1


+ I like the actual WW2 poster part

+ The titles & credits


– Not sure on the background

– Maybe try and have the WW2 poster be the whole poster

So I’m going to try a couple of variations of this poster and maybe a couple of completely different ones just to have a few options for the final poster.

– Jay


Dissecting Posters

Today I looked at 3 different film posters in order to get an idea of the look, style & conventions they have.

American Beauty

I looked at American Beauty’s poster as it is a drama like my film and is also one of the more iconic posters of its generation.


Poster disecton

The Machinist

I analysed The Machinist’s poster as the film was a great source of inspiration throughout the filming and editing of my film from the colour grading to the overall psychological display shown on the screen. Therefore I thought it would be sensible to see how they showed the psychological nature of the film to their audience in order to achieve the same with my film poster.


Machinist dissection

Saving Private Ryan

Although my film isn’t necessarily a war film ‘The French Leaves’ has the backdrop of the effect of the war on an individual, therefore I thought it would be good to see how one of the most successful WW2 films of all time attracted its audience and what style it took.


saving p ryan poster

Overall doing this exercise has shown me a lot about the general positioning of posters despite the difference in genres or themes. Therefore I can now conform or break away from these trends to create a successful film poster.

– Jay


Poster Research – How to make an effective film poster

When making a film poster one must look at the general conventions and aesthetics of professional examples so I searched for feature film posters that I thought were successful this is what I found:

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I looked at a whole lot of posters and this certainly started off my creative juices flowing and made me realise every poster has a simple concept that fits the film in some way however I’m going to have to take a more in-depth look at some of the posters I find successful in order to really get a feel of what makes them work.

As far as the concept for the poster I wanted to have a World War 2 propaganda feel as my film is a about a supposed war veteran, more specifically the phrase ‘Loose Talk,  Can Cost Lives’ so I based my poster within a poster on the following.

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I found the posters on this website

I really like the idea of doing it in the style of a WW2 poster as they were designed to be eye catching, interesting and persuasive as they were propaganda for the war. Therefore hopefully I could use these elements to my own use to persuade people to watch my film.


Before I could start forming anymore ideas for how to design my poster I also needed to know how to make my poster look like a professional film poster.

Luckily I found a font here which is the official font of most posters which would really sell it as an actual movie poster.


However this was only half the problem solved as I needed to know how to format it however this picture helped me with that a great deal.


Along with that picture I also needed to know how to make my poster stand out and I found this fantastic article on how to do just that. Here are the 7 elements of a successful movie poster it suggested:

1. Attention – jump out from the wall.

2. Iconography – showing without telling.

3. Interest – create an incentive to see the film.

4. Appeal – create desire with fans and non-fans alike.

5. Style – a look that’s consistent with the film.

6. Lasting Appeal – a look that suits other formats.

7. ‘Recognizability’ – if it’s a sequel, make it obvious.

This got me thinking about ideas for my films movie poster and how I could achieve these areas. Here is what I came up with:

Attention – Strong image/colours, perhaps a WW2 propaganda style poster which would also fit with the style of the film. Or maybe a simpler but strong image of a single object such as a leaf which would link with the title.

Iconography – ‘The most effective movie posters are iconic, presenting the themes in the film without resorting to flat out saying what it’s about.’ – therefore again using the iconography of a WW2 poster as the films display would create interest for a passerby and get them thinking what the film would be about rather than just telling them.

Interest – This was slightly harder as my film doesn’t contain any particularly bold or visually striking scenes other than the final shot which would give the plot away. Therefore maybe something simple again like an object or design would create interest for someone to watch my film. So I must work hard to make the design of the poster striking to make up for the lack of striking imagery from the shots in my film.

Style – As aforementioned I feel a WW2 poster design my provide a style which suits the mood and content of the film.

Lasting Appeal – This is also tricky as I do not feel a WW2 poster design would fit on a DVD cover and have the same impact as it would as the film’s poster. Therefore again an object such as a leaf may represent the film in a scaleable way.

‘Recognizability’ – As ‘The French Leaves’ is not a sequel I’m going to take this to mean recognisable in its genre therefore I must take great care to look at other posters from films in similar genre to my film and look to replicate the feel of those posters without copying them and being unoriginal.

Overall I feel for my film a WW2 inspired poster may be good for filling the categories of Attention, Iconography, Interest & Style but perhaps a simpler object based poster may be better for achieving Lasting Appeal/ Scaleability & ‘Recognizability’ of the film so it may be worth trying out both ideas in order see which works the best. However my initials thoughts are that a WW2 poster style may be the most successful for my film.

– Jay