Encounter the beauty of a poster / YUI TAKADA

“Encounter the beauty of a poster” is a theme for the graphic designers who are a part of the project “POSTERS”. A journey about how they start paying attention to posters and its graphic, follow up to the works and projects that influenced them when they were young, until to their success and how they find their own way in creating.


When I was a student at Kuwasawa Design school, there was an exhibition from Nisumi at ggg (Ginza Graphic Gallery).
I was impressed by the content that gave me an overview of Japanese graphic design during the period of high economic growth in the 1950s to 1970s.
At that time, Kashiwa Sato and Hiro Sugiyama were the stars in graphics, and of course I admire their way of design but the strong energy of Nisumi’s generation blew me away. I like how this generation is using techniques like the phototypesetting and silk screen, a creation by hands. It inspired me and let me want to go in that direction as well.

"Marguerite at night“ by Makoto Wada (1957) (Picture on the left side)

I used to go to the evening classes, so I worked part-time at the Ikko Tanaka Design Room during the day. Every day I secretly looked at the posters which were stored in the basement of the building. I was stunned by the colored posters and its typography.
I need to confess that I am totally in love with letters, back then when I look at Monsen's print collection, my first question was: why are there such beautiful letters but not available as fonts!
So what I did is, I start scanning them and used it for projects or also for the title in presentations. As well as my actual work I was really particular how I show those letters. My friend and I were completely character nerds. We discovered the phototypesetting world like real detectives. *laugh*

"Teiichi Nakayama recital“ by Ikko Tanaka (Picture on the right side)
"The 5th Sankei Kanze No“ by Ikko Tanaka (1958) / "The 8th Sankei Kanze No“ by Ikko Tanaka (1958)

I also like works from overseas it starts from Bauhaus “Neue Grafik” and Russian “avant-garde” but this doesn’t have an end if I would mention all. Nevertheless, when I look back to the posters from Olt Aicher exhibition at GGG, I’m still impressed and totally fascinated. Can we talk about Kijuro Yahagi who used Aichers work for his design: The color balance, how he uses space and placed the typography on his poster, it is just perfection and gives me a peaceful view.

Poster of “Ausstellung Olt Aichner” ("Olt Aicher's exhibition“) by Kijuro Yahagi (1988)

People always tell me that my work expresses something nostalgic. If you look back to the beginning of my journey, I told you about the generation where I got most inspired. I think these inspirations are my roots of my own design. I mean I use the characters of phototypesetting in my work, actually I have never made it traditionally by myself but I ask phototypesetters to send me the characters that were assembled as data and edit them on my computer.

A good example is the poster I made for Giorgio Morandi’s exhibition. All the characters are typesetting characters. If you look closely, the corners are rounded, the lines are wavey, the numbers are having an edgy shape. Those are shapes that cannot be created with computer fonts. Sometimes there are also distortions, means the letters are not always perfectly vertical and horizontal. It actually depends on the typesetting person. But such subtle errors and deviations are rather welcome, I love it.

Poster of "Giorgio Morandi, endless variations“ by Yui Takada (2016)

The main art work I chose was a still life from Morandi. It makes me so curious why Morandi place the objects extremely to the left, on the same time I also love this unique thinking. So this leads me to move the letter to the left as much as I could, too. I made sure that the whole thing didn’t get out of balance and kept his typical color combination in focus.
I love triggering concepts, it impresses me. Concepts what makes you curious about the artists purpose. Playing layouts, unique textures, untypical way of creating. That’s what I value most in my work.

Poster of "Giorgio Morandi, endless variations“ by Yui Takada (2016)

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