Category Archives: Development and Realisation

Almost Complete

My poster is now complete other than a title and a timeline label. The only major change I made that deviated from my final plan was that the whole image has now been rotated to try and give the impression of momentum or movement. I have managed to resist to urge to add extra things like little meteors, in order to stay true to the idea of keeping it simple and uncluttered.
There are some things I would do differently next time. These include analysing the data thoroughly sooner and using the software to flesh out ideas sooner. I would use the software to try my ideas out sooner because although it is was faster for me to do quick sketches of ideas, I think I relied on them too much and seeing it on the screen can sometimes help with eliminating ideas or help to progress them faster. Now that I have gained some experience using Adobe Illustrator in workshops and by myself it should be easier to do this.

Final Changes

I have now reassessed my design and the data I will use and decided to use a different set of data. The data I am going to use is the date meteorites were found and not the date they impacted with the earth. I am also simplifying my design.

Here is a list of changes and new ideas.

  • The timeline is now behind the lines, with the lines touching it and the date of each find shown. The dates are shown so the viewer does not have to work them out, helping with the simplicity.
  • The meteors scattered around the image have been removed because it took the focus away.
  • There was going to be a very large meteor placed close to the viewer, but this may look as if they were viewing the image from the meteor. So I will not be putting it in.
  • There were going to be sparkling stars in the black background but when I created some in illustrator I thought they would clutter the image, so have opted for a simpler starry effect. This will also help to create space around the image helping to portray some vulnerability of another impact.
  • There will no longer be lines intersecting the tails, as in order to simplify the poster I am now only showing location and time.
  • I have chosen to only have the three largest meteors found from each location and only around 5 locations as too many lines will ruin the athletics of the image and make it harder to read.  This also has the benefit of making it easier to have a smaller date range for the timeline.
  • The data I am now using is from I will be using the data from Northwest Africa, South Africa (Angola), Russia, Yemen and Lithuania.
  • I considered having each line a different colour but decided that one colour for each country would make it easier to read.

Creating Final Poster in Illustrator

When it came to creating this poster I started by creating the image of the earth. Originally I used the trace tool in Illustrator to create a vector image and changed the settings until I was satisfied, fortunately I learnt a lot on this in a workshop. However I decided that I would prefer to have an image that was less complex and drew my own by drawing over the traced image, discarding it and adding colour.


Original image from


Image after being traced and edited.


Drawn image.

The rest of my poster I created using Illustrators tools.

More Changes

Since my last post I have refined my design (sketch below). However when I came to finalise which country’s I was going to use and look at the data in more detail, it became apparent that even this design would not end up the way I had envisioned, although I believe I can still use the basic design if I make some changes, such as the data used. This was due to an oversight on my part. The mistake I made was that I did not look at the data thoroughly enough during the design process and made assumptions! I feel that I have learnt by this and that it is a mistake I will not quickly repeat.



Initially my first choice was the sketch that used the tails that looked a little like the one in the image below from However upon giving it some more thought, this may not be the best choice as when I apply it to the meteor data it will not look as I would like, that is, nice smooth wavy tails demonstrating quantity over time by their length and mass by their thickness. This is because the scale will be so vast, which means the tails will be very very thick and very thin.

I have now decided to base my design on a variation of the very last sketch I did, where the earth has solid lines coming from it which are a uniform thickness, I will still use a timeline and still have the location shown by were the line ends.  As I want the earth to look like a meteor to make the image visually interesting I will make the lines wavy purely for effect, although they could be interpreted as the path each meteor took to earth.


I have now made some decisions about my poster. The first based on what I have done so far, is that I want my poster to focus more on being visually interesting in how it displays the data, rather than a more scientific clinical approach. To that end I have had a few brainstorming sessions and have made several sketches exploring different ideas I have had. I have also made the decision to use illustrator to create my poster.




I have also been considering some questions regarding my poster, such as who is it for and the tone of the message.  At this stage I think I would like the tone of the message to be that the earth is slightly vulnerability, which could be achieved by showing the earth in space, alone!  I considered aggressive, exciting, fear, reassuring or curiosity as the tone of the message, with perhaps large explosions but decided against it. With regard to who it is for I think I would like it to be aimed at adults but easy for children to understand. I have also considered hidden meanings in the poster such as a timeline that does not have an end or an arrow on the end of it connoting there is more to follow.


Since my last post I decided to research visual ways to represent data rather than focus on posters that displayed the type of data I am looking to display. I have also seen some examples in lectures that gave me inspiration.

I saw this image in a lecture and immediately thought of how I could use this type of wavy line varying in thickness and length coming from the earth to demonstrate the meteorite data and how visually it could look like the tail of a meteorite entering the earth’s atmosphere. I also like the creative use of the timeline.



This image came from and I found it interesting, as it is a simple but clever way of comparing large figures of money that are so big it is hard to imagine. I chose to include this image as it has occurred to me that if I choose to look at the mass of meteorites I will need some way of demonstrating this.

Based on the research I conducted I have decided to stick with the meteorite theme as I can now visualise potentially interesting visualisations of the data, but also because it was the one I was drawn to initially and would like to see what I can do with this theme. I have already done some research on how meteors approach the earth as I had an idea of having them arc in a certain way, but there seems to be no particular pattern.

Development and Realisation

This week I started a new unit called development and realisation.  The task we have been given is to create an A2 poster that visually communicates a theme that is based on data, without using excessive text.  It needs to be understood by others regardless of their culture or belief system, an example of this would be that not all cultures read from right to left.

Weve been given various options to choose from, however I am initially drawn to the theme “How many documented meteor impacts have there been”.  In which I will need to visually map the location and time of meteor impacts in a country or compare quantity and mass of meteors in several country’s.

I have included below some imagery related research  I did toward this theme, as the emphasis is not on the quality of the data .

I am currently deciding whether to pursue this theme as although these images are very good and do exactly what they were designed to do, I don’t want to create something that looks similar to them, so I will do some more research and see if I have some inspiration.  If not I will change my theme because I don’t want to waste too much time and end up rushing the image.