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Using typography to celebrate a community

Communities have traditionally been defined by geographical borders, but the way we identify community is ever changing. There is a whole host of different types of communities out there. These generally fit under five different headings: interest, action, place, practice and circumstance. Language is often strongly ingrained in the nature of a community from the language we speak to how and where we communicate. How could this translate across to typography becoming an identifier for community as well?


Every four years since 2000, AIGA has activated its community of designers across the U.S. and beyond to Get Out the Vote. The campaign is part of Design for Democracy, an AIGA initiative to increase civic participation through design.

This civic engagement initiative wields the power of design to motivate the American public to register and turn out to vote in the 2020 general election, as well as local elections to come. The core of the campaign is original, nonpartisan posters generated for printing and public distribution. It is vital to the spirit, impact, and accessibility of this campaign that posters are nonpartisan.

For the 2020 General Get Out the Vote (GOTV) campaign, AIGA is partnering with Nonprofit VOTE and includes a main window card format (portrait, 11×17 inches) as well as additional sizes and communication vehicles so nonprofit organizations and election officials will have a more versatile pool of resources at the sizes they need: poster, postcard, billboard, social posts.

AIGA Get out the Vote Campaign

Learning Outcomes

  • Create value with demographic research.
  • Understanding the need for clear messaging with specificity to target audience.
  • Expressing Cultural, Social & Community values through design.


Create a typography-led integrated graphic design campaign that:

  1. uses type to celebrate a community of your choice (maybe your own?) and showcase what makes it unique
  2. explores communities beyond the usual expectations. Such as online communities, those with shared interests, groups trying to bring about change or even communities brought together by circumstance. It’s up to you.
  3. motivate and encourage your community of choice to to register and turn out to vote in the 2020 general election.

Project Schedule

Due dates will be announced for each stage:

  • Stage 1 DUE 9/4/20 Group Research: target audience (community) & strategy
  • Stage 2: DUE 9/9/20 Group Brainstorm creative strategy & develop sketches  
  • Stage 3: DUE 9/11/20 Group Pitch and Presentation (2 options) to rest of the class. Prepare printouts and sketches to post on this site.
  • Class votes and assess most successful campaigns pitched
  • Stage 4: DUE: 10/16/20 Students work individually on design and production of selected campaigns, with focused community. In-class work session. One-on-one team meetings to discuss strategy and ideas for campaign. Post design references to class. 
  • Stage 5: DUE: 10/21/20 Campaign design and revisions. Multi-Channel campaign -> snail mail and social media. Post work in progress to class.
  • Stage 6: DUE: 10/23/20 Final presentation ALL WORK DUE

Strategy Considerations

  • Target Demographics, Who are we talking to?
    Those within your chosen community. Those who might not know about your community but want to become a part of it. Or even those who simply have no idea that the community exists.
  • How to identify uniqueness
    You’ll need to do your research and be inquisitive. This isn’t about enforcing stereotypes or making assumptions. Explore a fully rounded view of what makes your community different and have a solid understanding as to why.
  • How to celebrate community The community you choose should have a positive message. It mustn’t alienate or degrade other communities.
  • How to find inspiration
    Your inspiration can come from anywhere; you just need to sell it. So why look at obvious sources? Consider the typography in the heritage of your community. Or maybe look at things within it that provide stimulation and symbolism?

Show how your output is relevant to your community alongside your execution. Whatever applications you choose, type must be the major creative expression.


Your final campaign must include: (More detailed project specifications will be provided as we move into development.)

  1. 3 posters
  2. 2 social media / digital advertising initiatives.

Additional Links and Resources

Project Resources

Typographic Resources

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