Take A Stand

Using Propaganda to Arouse Perspective


Melody Herrera

Examplary student creation of a “Take A Stand” poster.

Through a combination of research and the use of a sometimes troubling software, Kelly Charles and Lucas Gearhart’s Graphic Design II classes will create propaganda posters based in controversial topics from history over the course of the next three weeks.

“Basically, we are–our project right now is to pick a topic, like a controversial topic from the past, and then, create a poster in Adobe Illustrator,” said sophomore Cassie Garcelon.

Usually, the classes utilizes Adobe Photoshop to finalize a composition, but the pair of teachers decided that Illustrator would be better. Adobe Illustrator is a graphics software in which one can create icons, illustrations, and other drawing-based projects, but not all of the students are comfortable with the use of the graphics software.

“The students have to become, like, semi-expert on the topic, and they will present it to the class. It’ll be, like, a three week project. It’s also a chance for them to get back to basics because, like, not everyone knows how to properly use [Illustrator],” said Gearhart.

The project was created so that groups of students could work together as if they were apart of a graphic design firm, contracted to design posters for a public event.

“I love this project. I did it for the first time last year, and I think it’s really cool because I get to see what [students] are passionate about,” said Charles. 

The project itself has depth in meaning for both student and teacher because history is filled with disputes and issues that people still fight for now. Students get that chance to show what they want to fight for, something that rarely occurs, since they are always given a topic they have to fight for or risk their grade.

Sophomore Evelyn Choi said, “I’m hoping that I can get people aware of one certain thing, like, maybe, a smaller topic that others wouldn’t usually tackle, like a yucky topic to talk about, but that’s necessary to.”

Students abilities and application will be tested in the composition of their posters through the use of Illustrator.

Garcelon said, “Barring the limitations of the program, it is still a poster, though I do want to get better at composing comprehensive pieces of information and displaying them in a way that’s efficient.”

Research and designing abilities will all have to come together by February 7 when students are set to present their final compositions.