Film Poster Exhibition Excites

poster_exhibitionEver want to see a musical movie starring The Black Eyed Peas? Or would you prefer to see Selena Gomez in a Vietnam movie? In the hallways of the new Rechnitz Hall, the community can find some unfamiliar movie posters. Students from Professor Karen Bright and Professor Pat Cresson’s digital imaging classes have created their own movie posters based on film concepts they created. The gallery consists of students who have taken the class in the last three semesters.

Students were given a random selection of colors, locations, names, dates, adjectives and film genres. The students used that information to create their own movie summary, which served as a basis for the poster. Amanda Stojanov, junior and graphic design major, found this to be nerve-wracking.

Stojanov said, “I was hesitant because there are so many things that I wanted to do before we even picked our criteria and so it was changing everything. The criteria actually turned out to help a lot when we were writing our own short stories for the poster. We were required to use this criteria in our short stories [which] would be the background to our movie poster. This was also a challenge because this meant that we had to come up with our own movies.”

Only after creating their summary, complete with plotline and character development, could students begin to work on their posters. Summaries for most posters could be found next to each poster.

The posters boast some familiar names such as Natalie Portman, Robert Downey Jr., Leonardo DiCaprio and Ryan Gosling. Some posters even had musical acts like The Black Eyed Peas, Taylor Swift and Lana Del Rey breaking into the film industry.

One poster for a movie called “Evelyn” was likely inspired by Lana Del Rey’s vintage style. James Franco co-stars in the movie, created by Gabriella Colon. Del Rey stars as the title character trying to break into the music industry. She becomes a famous blues singer, but her drug addict ex-boyfriend isn’t exactly happy for her. He poisons her and convinces the world that she committed suicide.

Colon used a black and white photo of Del Rey, which helped to convey the time period. However, she added color with a city skyline and the golden title, which made the poster stick out. The flowers on the poster and Del Rey’s closed eyes nicely foreshadow the ending of the film.

Susan Witowski created a poster that paired up Ben Affleck and Ray Liotta. In Pursuit takes place in the 1920s during prohibition. Two businessmen smuggle alcohol into the United States from Canada in maple syrup jars. They distribute the alcohol at the bar that is hidden in their gentlemen’s club.

The poster nicely collages all of the elements of the film. Affleck and Liotta are set against the backdrop of a club. Catherine-Zeta Jones is a flapper on the lower half of the picture. The only issue with this image of Zeta-Jones is that it was on a movie poster for Chicago and is rather iconic to any fan of musical films. However, it does fit with the theme of the poster quite well.

Stojanov did not choose to write a summary for her movie poster, The Ray Maker, but instead wrote a poem. Stojanov explained, “While I was writing the short stories, I was realizing some of my sentences were very short and abrupt, and I was doing this because I wanted to evoke a sense of danger. I realized that this would not work in the story and so I used that base to write a poem.”

Stojanov spent four weeks on the project in class and at home. Her effort certainly shows in the final product. The poster for The Ray Maker is a dark, desolate room with just a chair, some wilting flowers and a Victorian chandelier. Stojanov’s use of red could be flower petals on the floor, but they also could be blood. It creates a wonderfully creepy effect.

The movie poster exhibit will be in Rechnitz Hall through the end of May.