Design Hero — Poster

Jacky Lococo
12 min readJan 25, 2022

Choosing a design hero

When I went to a pre-college in high school, the professor I worked with told us to keep a designers list and also a google list. I think his initial intent in doing this was to widen our design vocabulary but it has definitely helped with narrowing down a design hero!

To start, I referenced the previous list and then also included a few more that I found online. This process was a bit daunting just because it was hard to see which would yield the most information and flexibility within each project. While I was formulating this list, I mainly wanted to stick with architects and fashion designers because I think it would be interesting to create a graphic and communicative language around designer's who are more structural. It may also be difficult to separate the graphic designer’s style from my own trying to relay it, if I choose a graphic designer.

Top 2 Choices

  1. Pierre Cardin

I didn’t know about Cardin before my research, but I knew of his work. Pierre Cardin is an Italian, French designer who really pioneered the 60’s mod fashion movement. One of the things I found most intriguing about Cardin was that he didn’t soley focus on fashion, he also worked in industrial design designing furniture, automobiles, and even pens. Another thing that I found extremely interesting about him was the idea that he made it a big mission to democratize fashion. He ones one of the proponents of the “prêt-à-porte” or “ready-to-wear” movements.

I also absolutely love his visual style. His work is so bold, graphic, and such a staple of the time. Yet, it is also so innovative and unique that it feels a bit contemporary and ahead of its time.

2. Ricardo Bofill

My other choice is Ricardo Bofill. He was a Spanish architect based in Barcelona, and unfortunately passed away about two weeks ago. I have been a fan of his for quite a while, and I absolutely love his work. He combines post modernism and futuristic/sci-fi like forms to create buildings that are seemingly unreal. His work is extremely playful and you really get an impression of his architectural values just by looking at his work.

Pierre Cardin — FINAL CHOICE

To be extremely honest, up until the last moment, I was fully going to work on Ricardo Bofill as my design hero. However, after looking at both of their work again, Cardin seemed to have a much larger arsenal of work that I could work with. But, this meant I was going to go with someone that I didn’t know very well.

But, in the past few days after I chose, I have completely fallen in love with his work. I read a few articles and also watched the documentary “House of Cardin,” and I find his story so interesting. The reasons for his decline in luxury and why he is not known for some of the truly innovative things he has done in the fashion industry will, I think, help me to craft a narrative throughout the different deliverables of this project.

Moodboards — REVISED

In my revisions, I mainly focused on trying to show a bit of text and try to expand a bit more by showing examples of the different typefaces in paragraph settings.


The sketching process proved to be a bit difficult for me. Originally, I had the idea of creating a composition with these different cut circles. I felt that channeled a bit of the 60’s mod into the composition. The composition I started off of is the one below:

From here, I kept with the circle motif and kept on iterating and trying out new baseline compositions. In my process, I usually start with illustrator. I think a lot in terms of shapes and broad compositions and I find that that helps me the most. However, in this project, I found a lot of pressure to incorporate more sketchy elements into my work and that actually ended up being a lot more difficult than just trying out high fidelity work.

Feedback on Sketches:

  • Use the forms created by Cardin to drive the geometry of the piece, the perfect circle might not create that much intrigue in the composition
  • The elongated “I” is very similar to the Tribecca Film Festival so find another way to use his name — also use all lowercase because that is actually his logo.
  • Be careful about placing → circles with “CARDIN” make it look like “CARDINO”
  • Bottom row is most intriguing for some people.

After I did the sketches, I felt very lost in terms of where to go next. But, talking to Brett and hearing that I should jump straight into high fidelity helped a lot. I really don’t know what to do or how to work unless I am actually working with the correct assets, forms, and compositions. From here, I want to mainly work in high fidelity iterations and explorations rather than working through sketching and thumb-nailing.

Idea Formulation: Feb 4

I think what is really difficult for me right now is trying to manage what in Cardin’s portfolio to narrow in on. I think

Continued Explorations: Feb 3 — Feb 6

I’m a bit lost in the sense that I don’t fully know where I’m going or how I should proceed. So, I started by vectorizing some of my sketches to see how they would fit and work to see where my head is at a bit and how well my sketches would transfer into the higher fidelity setting

Creating Two Draft Compositions:

Reference Images of 60’s Space Age and also some compositions:

References of 60’s mod/futuristic pieces and different uses of circles (none of cardin’s work or pieces)


When I wanted to pick a color palette, I knew that I was going to choose mainly black and white. Within Cardin’s work, he says that from comes first and color comes last. This is something that I very much agree with Cardin on and I think that prioritizing the composition would allow for flexibility within the color usage. But, for color, I was very inspired by the color used in the photograph of one of Cardin’s pieces (a blue interesting helmet)

2 Draft Posters:

Below are the two draft ideas I have for Tuesday’s class. I am not really in love with either right now and both seem like a quarter of what I need to get to (together they maybe make a third of what I want the final to be). I think the past few days I’ve been trying to find a clear direction in what I want to focus on in his extensive portfolio. I think that was a success for this round of work because now I know that using the Space Age route would be most engaging and helpful for viewing Cardin.

Feedback Feb 8

  • Incorporation of the portrait: be more intent rather than just tacking it on
  • Can there be different text sizes within body: creates hierarchy
  • Get text into poster to know what your working with *
  • Craft more of a dynamic image — not just grid like static
  • Scale hierarchy → change up the different sizes of the circles
  • Use circles within his work to complete some of them
  • Pull from both of the posters to make something a bit new
  • Create movement outwards with the scale of the circles.

Priorities and Next Steps

  • I want to develop the reference to space a lot more
  • I think I need a clear visual direction which I’m kind of having to shape a bit still

What I want to say about Cardin:

I think what Francis said made a lot of sense. I think laying out the main message I want people to understand from viewing this poster would be really helpful. I think right now, people know Cardin for cheap pieces that are not, in my own opinion, “good design.” But, his story is one that is so complex and to know him more as a visionary within design and seeing past the world right now is what I want to show. When he was the one crafting his designs he propelled design into modern, chic, expression within fashion. I think my goal is to redefine the Cardin name a bit, and that is the reason for a lot of my choices.

Thursday Feb 10–Draft 1 Poster

For today, I mainly just laid the ground work and margins within I want to play around. This is definitely not where I want to be tomorrow or even later today, but for right now I feel like this is something I can really work with.

Main Metaphor/ Message: I want to showcase the two worlds that Cardin works in. He had to work in the time of the 50’s — 80’s while trying to look to the future. In many ways he was ahead of his time and I want to showcase that by creating two layers and trying to show connection between the two.


  • Complexity → comes from varying sizing
  • Less type in the paragraphs → 2–3 sentences
  • Create blacks when you work in CMYK : 30, 30, 30, 100
  • Export in TIFS and make a 300 dpi at least
  • Drop cap, make it more intentional and deeper into the paragraph
  • Maybe bring up the blue girl a bit more

Feedback from Yoshi:

  • Add texture to the different rings
  • Add textures or spot colors to the different “planets”
  • Add a different space suit to try and incorporate a bit more → look up retro maybe make it more dynamic → maybe even make him smaller
  • Drop shadow: looks a bit UI/UX needs more finessing to look good
  • In the quote → use caps
  • For timeline → maybe left align the numbers
  • Some tangents and some open space in the circles that feel a bit empty
  • Try out some other colors → the gold is receding a bit and is harder to print

Classmates Feedback Exercise:

  • Empty spaces within the circles
  • Maybe adding more space between the different circles
  • spaces are a bit funky between element's of the timeline
  • the circle girl looks a bit tagged in there
  • Finness the rag a bit (I think maybe I should try justification)

Overall this direction I think purchased me a lot of room to play now. I really want to spend the next four days really pushing this. What I want to accomplish:

  • make it pop a bit more
  • have nuance within the message and details
  • create considered details
  • Play with the circles a bit → break the grid but use as reference for type and paragraph etc.
  • adding complexity
  • clean crisp type ALSO CONSIDERED → not just slapping it where I did
  • Playing with the composition of the circles, rings, name etc.
  • Also I think I need to visually cleanse my pallet a bit and stare at a blank wall because I think studio is very visually stimulating and its hard for me to turn on the “fresh eyes” perspective with this project
  • Maybe add some dimension to the portals (see below)

This is a photo from one of the Cardin books that I checked out. This use of white, shadows, gradients is something that I definitely want to channel a bit as I work on it a bit more.


I decided to match the blue of the hat with another color because I think it would be a better fit than the goldish brown.

Color palette left, explorations right

The main reason that I chose the orange was because Cardin does use this color within his work, and it is a staple color of the 60’s and space age time period.

Shifting colors and Images

Over the weekend I realized that the way I was going about this project was not exactly correct. One of the biggest things I need to do when telling the story of Pierre Cardin is showcase the work that will compel people to want to learn more about him. Right now, people associate his name and label with very cheap products, and not with his original revolutionary designs. Because I am convinced of his talent, and I have seen so many images of his work, I was choosing to showcase a few that weren’t (in my mind) the best of his work, but fit in with what I was making. I think this really made my poster so much less convincing in the end.

grid and circle structure

New Photos

So I decided to shift and use some of his designs that I really made me fall in love with his work.


For the new color, I wanted to simplifying it way down with black, white and just one other accent color. Having a color photograph seems a bit out of place in this context and it looks live I’ve made the whole poster around that one piece, which is a bit of what I’ve been doing. I think for a while, I was trying to make the photos fit the composition instead of working from his more impressive pieces. So, I think this step is going to help me focus that a bit more

“Form comes first. Then the material that expresses the volumes, the flow, the flexibility. Color comes last.” -PC

Other color explorations:

Final Poster

Feedback After Submission

  • Typeset the captions and the paragraph a bit more
  • Think about the choice to have the photos be all white and black

I am going to keep these in mind and fix the type going into the booklet. I think in sourcing images I might find a better option and I may revert to having the blue hat in the bottom corner. Overall I thought this project was a bit difficult. I found it hard to distill his style into just one poster, but I am happy with the overall look and the concept! I am exciting moving into the booklet!