Category: RFT film flyer (James’s project)


We were given a project to create a flyer for the Reading Film Theatre Autumn 2017 listings. We had to create two different designs based on the information given and our own research.

In the brief, we were asked to keep in mind the targeted audience when making the flyers and consider the layout and typography used and they were:

  • A father with two children under 10
  • A visiting professor working in Reading, but originally from Switzerland
  • A retired doctor and her husband, both of whom have a passion for old Hollywood

Firstly, I brainstormed the important details essential for each target audience and circled out the ones that was important amongst all of them. Then, I sketched out some potential layouts for the movie listings.

Brainstorming ideas

After having some ideas of how I wanted my layout to be, I searched up the RFT logo and based on that, I chose the colour palette for my flyers. The main colours were red and grey. Then, I proceeded to edit the text information about the movies and its details and I noticed, obviously, that a lot of vital information, such as running times, country of origin, etc were missing.

Keeping the target audience in mind, therefore, for my first design, I went with a grey background with black and red text over it. I had used red for the movie titles, so that they stood out easily and I focused on making the movie running time, location of the theatre and languages available more visible, so as to make it easier for the target audiences to find these details easily, as I believe these are what the targeted audiences would look up for when searching up information of the movies. I kept my overall design simple and straightforward so that everything is accessible without much trouble.

Design 1

For my second design, I decided to categorise the movies in terms of the months they were being aired in the theatre. I used a gradient of red, grey and orange for the heading, sub headings and movie titles, to reflect the colours of the RFT logo. I did the layout of the dates of the movies from left to right and I grouped the age ratings and running times together as I believe they were the most important in terms of the hierarchy of information. For the rest of the information, I had laid out the times and the location first and then the other bits. I had also kept this whole design simple to make it quick and easy to find the information needed.

Design 2

Overall, I really enjoyed this project as I got to learn more in depth about InDesign and about layouts and hierarchies and I believe all the skills I have learned from this project will help me in my ‘Design for Reading’ book design project as well.

The PDF version of my flyer designs:

RFT film listings design 1

RFT film listings design 2



Blue and Pink Cinema Listings

With the two designs that I have created, I have decided to base them both on a similar layout however by changing the order of the movie listings through the use of various organisations and type weights, I was able to change the target demographic for each. For example I believe that the ‘Blue Listing’ appeals more to the “retired doctor and her husband, both of whom have a passion for old Hollywood”  as the hierarchy emphasises the directors, time and place of the movies creation and the cast, where the ‘Pink Listing’ is more targeted towards “a father with two children under 10” as the times and age ratings are more prevalent.

Cinema Listing (Pink) 01

Cinema Listing (Blue) 02

Autumn Film Festival

  • Draft 1: traditional (for retired people with old Hollywood passion)

The first draft is design for retired people who have free time to watch film. By grouping films according to month and date, they won’t miss any filming date in schedule. Besides, retired people or someone who have passion for old Hollywood would extra focus on the context of the film, so I add a quote below each film name to attract these audience and priority their interest to the film. I also use a traditional and decorative font to the title of Reading Film Theatre and add text of High rated movies, so as to suit their characteristic and appeal my audience.

  • Draft 2: mordernist (for international / busy people/ families)

The second draft is a more modernist design. As I would like to focus on the target audience of international and busy people, so I designed the flyer to be clearer and simplicity. Rather than grouping the movies by months, I distinguish them according to the film genre include classic, thriller and family friendly movie, which makes it easier to choose specific genre and relevant information for first prioritise, correspond with their own interests and to have a faster decision.

  • Peers feedback

From the peer’s feedback, there are many typing and structure mistic that I can’t found by my own, such as wrong punctuation, type spacing, force line break to respect the cast, and repeated information found, which will be a serious mistake in real life situation, so I should be more aware on it for alternative designs.

Final decision

After adjusting the typing mistakes, I decided to combining the two designs above in mordernist way, as I reckon that it is better to benefit a wider range of target audiences, include retired people, families, internationals and people who have Hollywood passion,ect. I abandoned the month grouping version as the date is actually easily to find. I remain the film quote as to introduce the film little more and appeal different audiences.

As to let my audiences choose what information they prioritize to look at, I haven’t particularly emphasis on a single title or information. However, I group the text by intrinsic and extrinsic information, as well as slightly change in font colour, weight and style to separate different information, so it will be easier to read. For example, I use red font in country which helpful for international user, bold text for the quote to have emphasize effect,ect. Lastly, modern font are used, also a red frame is added to create focus point to the information in middle.

By reflecting on my flyer design, I think I can improve in the informational grouping and idea of structuring the layout design in terms of hierarchy. It is a bit vague to read and boring for now, as it better to have featured layout style for an appealling first impression. I can look at peers work in achieving a more stylish flyer later.

Joyful Theatre


I started this project with some experimentations in indesign. I did some trials in the margins and columns as I tried to do landscape mode with 2 rows to fit the paper. I learned how to do the table in indesign so I could arrange the text equally along the page.  I began my search on past cinema listings and was inspired by many of them. I noticed how each listing has a different type of font that made the audience feel like they’re in the cinema. Then, I searched for fonts on google that fit well the movies theme and chose “Joyful Theatre” as my main font. I wanted a color that could be strong and independent above the white background so I chose black and dark blue. I tried playing around with the tint in some places too. Next, I added as many paragraph styles as I can in order to practice using them when there are many texts. I aligned the texts together and added a ruler guide for each line so every text would be aligned perfectly. I used Gill Sans Nova font to state the movie’s description, location, and date. I added paragraph rules below the movie title in order to align the date and location of the movie in a designed way. I tried to make the list easy for the eye to read so every age can be attracted to it. I believe I can use many of these stuff I learned in the book design project, especially the paragraph styles and ruler guides.

Cinema Listings Development

The Reading Film Theatre brief involved having to produce a pamphlet for the Reading Film Theatre Autumn 2017 Programme, presenting 10 films along with information about them on the page. It had to only include 2 colours (white does not count as a colour in this circumstance), 2 fonts, and possess 2 columns to present the information. Additionally, our design had to cater to a particular audience, such as a parent with 2 children and an elderly couple.

For my first draft, I included a gold gradient background along with black text to present the information. My initial ideas were to reference the “golden age” of Hollywood cinema, like the 1950s an 1960s; leading to me adding the gold background. My design was supposed to appeal to the older audiences, or connotate that it was of a classic cinema style, but I had not realised that I had already failed one of the briefs of having only 2 colours. Also, due to the text being the same colour and similar point size, it was fairly complicated to read upon first glance.  Furthermore, my inclusion of paragraph rules were not very helpful as they were the same colour as the text. Cinema Listing 1

With my second design I decided to only include a light blue colour and black text as I did not want my design to be as needlessly complicated to look at. However, in light of focusing on minimising my design I had forgotten about my chosen audience, which resulted with me becoming confused on what to do next. This, along with my lack of current Adobe InDesign knowledge, made me want to learn about how I could improve my design by seeking feedback from the Friday lesson. Cinema Listing 2

After, the feedback lesson I decided to simplify my design as well as not overcomplicate the visuals, along with editing general mistakes such as errors within the text. I decided to focus on the colours of the University logo that is usually depicted as red and white, to fit the colour scheme. The pdf file does not allow the font that I had chosen for the title, but for reference I had initially used a font called “Showtime”. This font had a Hollywood inspired text along with old film tape acting as borders above and below the title. I wanted my design to focus on being intended for the use of the elderly, as it was a simple design that became easier to read compared to my last concepts. The minimal use of red for the title as well as the titles for the films enhances the importance of the films and associates with the hierarchy of information, conveyed in Lonsdale and Twyman’s journals of typography. RFT Actual Design

RFT Listings

Reading Film Theatre Listings

I started off this project by drawing up small sketches of my initial layout ideas, I’d quickly decided that I’d have the main heading left aligned at the top of the page and then the contact info at the bottom, deciding this early meant that I then had a determined space for my actual content of the page, this allowed me to appropriately size the rest of the page properly.
I’d also focused on my layout for specifically each block of information, my idea was to keep this page with as few rules and lines and boxes as possible to allow it to read easy and feel breathable almost, this meant my layout for the information had to be clear and consistent between each section.

I started by creating the general layout and the columns, then created a template for the format i’d decided on for the information. I found doing it this way that as i went along and input all of the information i was able to adjust the sizing appropriately when i input new information and i learnt what the spacing and sizing actually needed to be as i went along. My main focus was to keep a systematic format for each section so that once you’d read one section of information you’d be able to understand all of them, this proved awkward in areas such as “Hotel Transylvania 2” where the name was extra long and required 2 lines, this led to me deciding to use an ‘outdent’ for the main title of the film, further separating the sections but meaning that names that spanned over 2 lines were still just as readable as any other while not taking up an obnoxious amount of space horizontally on the page.

Another of my steps was creating a background, since my goal was to create a format of bolds/italics/sizes/lines to break up the information in a block into understandable sections this meant that my choice of colours was free to use for the background graphic, using a mesh gradient i created a purple and orange background which wouldn’t be overpowering to look at but gave it a friendly feeling still rather than a blocky full colour background, next for this i decided to add in lighter sections of blurred circles attempting to tie into the theme of cinemas with a pseudo lens flare effect on the background. I created this is illustrator and then placed it into the indesign document.

Techniques learnt from Indesign

Reading film theatre (red and black-final)

Shown here is my cinema listing I created on Indesign. I chose to use this specific title as it reflects on my learning from this task. The reason it reflects so well is because from creating my two listings (one is showed here) I learnt new things and enhanced my knowledge on some of the techniques.

Before doing this task I struggled with using paragraph styles and characters and now I feel a lot more confident with using them for future tasks/projects. When I did stuggle to create some things or find some things I used the internet and researched how to overcome the issue.

Some issues I did overcome while creating my two listings were having to stop forcing line breaks, instead i used paragraph styles to help me. Overall I feel I have learnt a lot from this, one being to ask for feedback to improve my work and ideas as the feedback I recieved helped me to make my final outcome better.

Techniques learnt from Indesign

Reading film theatre (black and blue- final)

Shown here is my cinema listing I created on Indesign. I chose to use this specific title as it reflects on my learning from this task. The reason it reflects so well is because from creating my two listings (one is showed here) I learnt new things and enhanced my knowledge on some of the techniques.

Before doing this task I struggled with using paragraph styles and characters and now I feel a lot more confident with using them for future tasks/projects. When I did stuggle to create some things or find some things I used the internet and researched how to overcome the issue.

Some issues I did overcome while creating my two listings were having to stop forcing line breaks, instead i used paragraph styles to help me. Overall I feel I have learnt a lot from this, one being to ask for feedback to improve my work and ideas as the feedback I recieved helped me to make my final outcome better.

Movie time!

Project Brief

Design the programme flyer for Reading Film Theatre, listing their Autumn programme of films. Design TWO variants, based on some kind of underlying different approach (eg different users)

For this project, we were asked to design the Autumn 2017 cinema listings. We were given a document with all the information with typos and we had to correct them and then order and design the information so that it would be easy to understand. We also had to choose two types of users to design our cinema listings.

I chose:

  • Parent with two children under 10
  • Retired doctor and her husband, both of them who have a passion for old Hollywood


I started off by sketching out ideas on how each listing might look, keeping in mind which features of the listings would be more important for each user.I began with the design for the parent with two children under 10. For this design I thought that the title, age rating and the running time would be the most important for the parent as it would be key for them to know the age rating of the movie to see if the movie would be appropriate for their children and the running time as a parent might not want to sit through a long childrens movie. Due to this, I chose the middle sketch to base my cinema listings on as it had the title and age rating at the top and the running time directly under it.


For the retired doctor and her husband who have a passion for old Hollywood, I thought the key features for them was year of films, country the movie was made in, as well as being able to know which movies had extras such as subtitles or audio description. This is because old Hollywood is specific genre and to be able to see the year and country of the movie would be useful for the couple to find the movies they like the most. Therefore, I chose the last sketch to base my design on as it has the country and year of the movie towards the top of the listing.


I began by reading through the document and edited the text so that all necessary information was there such as the running time for every movie and correcting any typos in the movie informations. I decided to use the RTF’s logo colors for my color theme. As the logo had multiple colors and we were only allowed two, I used red and black as my colors, red as the accent color and black for the main body. I had originally planned to put the synopsis of each movie into my listings but I did not have any space to do this as we only had little space and already quite a lot of information to organise into the space. The two typefaces I chose was Gill Sans and Rockwell for both designs as they looked appropriate and has quite a lot of styles within the font such as italics, bold etc, and this was very useful in differentiating and highlighting certain information even without a range of fonts or colors.

First Draft and Feedback

In the feedback session, it was suggested to check that our listing have the correct hyphens and to have a full name on one line or movie title on one line as well as having correct spacing between hyphens, check spaces between numbers e.g., 8, 4 etc. I also decided to change the position of the title and information to make it more prominent.


This project really helped me understand to know the importance of knowing how the finished project will be viewed as looking as the printed version of my listings helped me see some of the issues I could not see on screen such as the size of the body text. As well as this, this project showed me how important of using paragraph styles as with so much information, anytime I wanted to make a change to a section such as the running time, I didn’t have to individually go through every bit.

Cinema Listings Development and Presentation

Initial Ideation

Following the brief being set, I began by quickly sketching designs. It is important to note that my target audience was a father with two young children, so many design choices were influenced by this. I used blocks in place of the main title, writing only the other information to see it in context. This was a purely experimental process intending to generate a range of ideas relatively quickly.

I trialed different positionings of the title mostly, which I shaded in pink for simplicity.  The larger texts, while optimal for a typography-based poster, would likely not work in the context of a cinema listing, which must be a vehicle for information. The A5 size limit means that text must be carefully balanced to ensure hierarchy and optimal readability.

Alternatively, when made smaller, the title loses its dominance over the other information. While there are other factors likely more important to a father, such as whether the timing of the film works with the family’s schedule, the conventions of a cinema listing and other users also have to be considered. The film title is typically the largest element in each individual listing, allowing other users to quickly identify a film that interests them.

After reflecting on these ideas, I concluded that the bottom right image on the first page and the top right image on the second page were the two most suitable. These two ideas appeared well-balanced but will be refined in later development.


Idea Refinement

Having decided on the two concepts, I drew these out to a larger scale, now writing the full title out. Although this is more in line with the final piece, the actual refinement would take place within InDesign, so this is simply refining the concept.

I drew the ideas twice, once with the longest title and once with the shortest, allowing me to see the extreme differences this element will need to have, in turn being able to adapt the design to these requirements.

Having done this, I used a red pen to write on notes and adjustments to make when in InDesign. At this point, I decided that shorter, single-line titles could span the height of two lines, believing that this would make the design look more balanced.

I also concluded that, while spacing was important and should be tweaked and adjusted when suitable, a larger font would be optimal. This would make the final printed product clearer, allowing it to be better at its purpose, to communicate information to a potential customer of the cinema.

Having concluded that these ideas would be suitable and refined them slightly on paper, I then had to use InDesign to begin the digital creation of the ideas.


Digital Creation

I began with black text, creating a single entry in the structure of my first sketch, using style sheets in order to regulate and standardize the sections. I found this stage complicated and difficult to construct, trying to tweak the paragraph styles to create a successful result. After watching a tutorial video on Drop Caps, I had finished the first entry and was able to quickly apply these styles to the remaining text.  I then added the remaining information, including the titles and contact details, which I placed at the top of the page. I adjusted the sizes of these, making the title significantly larger while making the other information smaller, semantically spaced, and arranged to create visually balanced spacing by controlling the negative space around these elements. I realised that smaller titles could not be in a larger font as initially planned, as this made the design look incongruous and visually imbalanced.

Having completed this, I reflected on the design. I decided that the spacing needed work, with the blocks seemingly blending into one. To combat this, I adjusted the spacing more and added rule lines underneath each listing. This helped to define each block of information as separate, differentiating the data and allowing the design to be more visually balanced.

Having created this design, I then added a coloured box to the top of the design. I selected a dark blue, allowing the text to all use the same colours (because, at the time, I thought that white counted as one of the two allocated colours). To allow the text within to be visible, I changed the colour to be white. This created a visual hierarchy, the white text standing out from the thick block of colour.

Completing a basic format, I then printed the design out to scale in black and white. This was a helpful stage within the process, allowing me to better understand and gauge the sizes of the various elements. Looking closely at this printed example, I was able to correct scaling and spacing issues that came up. For example, the smaller metadata was still too big in this example and more spacing would allow the design to seem more clear and visually appealing. I was also able to add more space between the upper listings and the coloured box, balancing the overall look better.

Having made these changes, I was happy with the design. I checked the use of punctuations and hyphens before resaving the design with a new name, allowing me to simply adjust the style sheets on the duplicated document instead of starting from scratch.


Second Design

Having stripped this duplicated file back to the basics, I was then able to make adjustments to make the alternate design. I began by adjusting the layouts of each listing, with this being the most important factor to the user. Although other stylistic choices were also necessary, such as changing the typefaces and colour used, I wanted to ensure the concept was visually effective and appropriate at communicating the desired messages. Being able to use the same size font as the previous design was a reassuring sign that this design would be similarly readable and clear to a potential customer.

I think that this listing layout, while still somewhat successful for shorter length films, works considerably better on films with longer titles. For example, in the working document on the left, entries like ‘Wind River’ and ‘Nosferatu’ look visually more appealing than ‘Detroit’ and ‘Coco’. This came down to the contrast of line length, with the bigger title standing out more and filling a larger amount of the negative space when the title is longer. Due to this, I increased the kerning of the titles, attempting to increase the horizontal size of these shorter titles, making them more appealing as individual listings.

The dark orange shade I selected for this design was incredibly effective, with both the body text, titles and colour blocks with white inner text looking visually appealing and inviting. Although the previous design’s dark blue was functional, I think that this colour conveys more character and personality, with the blue making the programme feel uninteresting and overly informative. For the target audience, this inviting design is more likely to appear to the children, while remaining clean and sharp in order to be a useful programme of information to the father.

Having got the layout to something I was happy with, I left the design for 10 minutes before returning to reflect on it with a fresh, more objective viewpoint. I concluded that more visual contrast was needed and, upon seeing the two non-English films, I decided to balance the design better. I did this by moving these two entries to the end of the list, putting a matching coloured box around them and changing the colour to white. With the large block of colour in the top left of the design, which was needed to highlight the products aims and format as a programme, this second box created balance and contrast without interfering with the hierarchy. This also helped to separate films of different languages, assisting clarity and benefiting the user experience.

Having completed this, I again printed the design off in black and white. I was then able to see the design to scale and in context as a printed document. While more changes and tweaks were exposed by this process, I was able to make these amendments at this non-essential stage. I then printed a full-colour copy of the design, bringing it into class for peer assessment.


Peer Assessment

My two programmes were printed on thick paper, almost card like in structure, but with a relatively smooth texture. Although a typical cinema listing would be on glossy paper, I decided that this wouldn’t work for my target audience. For a father with two young children, it is likely that they would want to hold and read this programme, so the final product would need to be somewhat robust to withstand anything that may happen to it.

Having shared this with peers, I had feedback written over the designs. This was a useful process, as I received information and feedback on aspects I hadn’t considered, such as the respect of putting actors’ and directors’ names on a single line.

With this information, I then went back to the last saved files of my respective designs, making necessary adjustments to adhere to this advice. For example, on the first design, the spacing between the dashes when writing times were highlighted as an area for refinement. I was able to alter this, changing the sixth spaces to hair spaces, making the text and the design as a whole look more visually effective, likely helping its purpose as a product to convey information.


Final Designs

Looking at the final designs, I am very happy with the overall outcomes. I think that the dark orange design looks visually better, with the colouring, typefaces and layouts helping this. The box in the bottom right helps to balance the product visually, creating a design that would be successful at communicating this information to the target audience, a father with two young children.