The Annie and Mary Day poster was a fun and quick project that I did for the Blue Lake Chamber of Commerce. The chamber had one existing photograph of an old poster that everyone had liked for the event, but no one had the files. I set out to design something similar to the old design, but with much better bones.
The old poster had a blown up photograph of one of Blue Lake’s historic trains set against a sky blue backdrop. My first step was to track down a much higher resolution train photograph. I was pleased with the stock photo of this 1800s engine that seems to be coming right at the viewer.
With that photo in hand, I carefully created a vector outline of the train so that it would be easy to select only that element of the photo. I copied this to a separate layer and tracked down a retro sunburst texture that I liked for the background. After adjusting hues to get something in the sky blue range, I added transparency and centered the sunburst toward the rear of the train to highlight the train’s momentum.
I duplicated the original sunburst for an element at the bottom of the poster, but in the process of moving it into position I fell in love with having a second sunburst overlaid over the first with a different perspective. The warmer color also gave the blue a nice aged look that worked well with the sepia tone of the train.
For the title and flavor text I used a vertically compacted version of the old west font, Mesquite. Other fonts on the poster were from the Oregon font family. Finally I added an old timey stamp for the free admission.