06 June 2013

Critique and makeover: Peruvian medicine

Today’s contribution comes from Kenzo Koike at USF Health Morsani College of Medicine in Florida, and is used with his permission. Click to get the bigger view:

The first things that jumped out at me were:

  1. With three very different logos in the title, it’s impossible for that title to be centered gracefully.
  2. There are myriad things that are not aligned, which is common in PowerPoint posters.
  3. The “peek-a-boo” light blue boxes against the dark blue background are a classic example of boxology.

The first revamp addresses these, while hopefully keeping the style intact. I moved the title to the left and the logos to the right. I eliminated the dark blue and made the light blue even lighter. I started working on the alignment issues.

Evening out spaces and lining things up was a sizable project, and I could probably spend hours fiddling even with the revised version below. But the version below is where I stopped and sent it back to Kenzo.

I moving the single reference from the bottom to directly underneath the table. This means a reader no longer has to go hunting for the reference, because it’s now at the point of need. It also creates a text element under the table, so it parallels all the other images around it, allowing more things to be lined up.

Consequently, this allowed the bottom box to become narrower. The top box was made narrower, too, by moving the purpose statement to the right of the word “Purpose” instead of underneath it. This also let me make the “Purpose” statement bigger, more fitting its importance.

That both the wide boxes got skinnier also let me make the title bigger again. The title should always be the biggest, clearest text element on a poster. In the first version, it’s fighting too much with the dark blue background and the logos.

There are still some design elements of this poster that I dislike, and would normally recommend against. The wide boxes spanning the length of the entire poster at the top and bottom will be something of a nightmare to a reader. The different image sizes of the SIS sign photo and the blog screen capture frustrate me to no end, because there will just be no good solution to make those align as they should.

As always, the goal here is improvement, not perfection.

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