By: Molly Hanzidiakou
When graphic design student Tara Caldwell submitted her poster design to the international competition she had no idea of the size of the field — and she certainly didn’t expect to win.
Caldwell, 21, won the international 2013 Miami Fashion Week Graphic Artist Poster Competition. She will be travelling to Miami on March 20, to receive her award on stage in front of international media.
The poster she created back in September was for a main assignment where students had to look online and enter a graphics contest that would be worked on throughout the entire semester.
“Some of the graphic design classes encourage students to apply and participate in competitions,” said David Bromley, one of the graphic design coordinators. “This allows them to learn new skills on their own. It also adds another element for students to showcase their work.”
Caldwell, in her third year, has always been interested in fashion, so when she came across the Miami Fashion Week contest she knew it was the one.
With strict rules to follow, Caldwell made notes of what she needed to incorporate into her poster. Size, format, logo and a photo from last year’s fashion show were just a few guidelines the poster needed to have.
“When thinking of a design, you have to think ‘how do I communicate this visually’,” said Caldwell. “I had key concepts in mind. I knew I wanted it to be bold, modern and edgy.”
Throughout the journey to the finished product of her poster, Caldwell had help from her teacher with developing the proper shape.
Caldwell’s design uses the ‘M’ for Miami as a main focus. “It reminded me of a deep neckline that many of the models wear on the runway. The model I chose had the shape and edgy look I wanted,” said Caldwell.
As a creative person who sees technical components and how they come together, Caldwell had several different designs and ideas for her poster.
“These ideas didn’t take that long for me to think of. I was always a computer nerd and did well in art, so graphic design is the perfect combination of the two,” said Caldwell.
The news arrived during reading week. Her poster was chosen out of many other designs submitted from all over the world as the campaign poster for Miami Fashion Week.
“I didn’t know I had that much support. My family, friends and teachers are all so happy for me,” said Caldwell.
“Tara is a professional student so it is fitting that she would win something like this,” said Andrea Emery, one of the co-ordinators of graphic design.
Caldwell will be taking this opportunity to travel to Miami as a reason to take a trip and a break from her school work. With her friend at her side throughout the fashion week, Caldwell will meet international designers and judges.
In addition to her poster being displayed all over during the event, she also gets to sit down with a judge of the contest. They will have an hour to look over her portfolio; a tremendous opportunity that she is very excited about.
“It’s one of my favourite pieces. I would say even more now that I won,” said Caldwell.