Project Yellow Light

billboard design

Project Overview

My objective was to create a billboard for Project Yellow Light, a national campaign that aims to promote safe driving by enlisting students to create public service announcements. To achieve this goal, I utilized Photoshop to design an impactful billboard.

The Challenge

This project required both technical ability and original creative expression. The main challenge of this project was learning how to use Photoshop and employing various principles of design to make a persuasive billboard. Moreover, I developed a meaningful message using copywriting techniques.

The Solution

To initiate my design, I brainstormed ideas that would influence me to drive safely. Through the process of idea generation, I tackled the challenge of implementing a rhetorical device into my copy. I used a pun so that the word “ditch” had two meanings. In the first clause, “ditch” means to discard while, in the second, it means to wind up in a ditch. After determining the phrase for the billboard, I delved into the visual design, employing hierarchy by emphasizing “phone” and “car” through white text while the rest was black. The sans serif font I chose evokes the typical government signage used on highways and incorporates sharp angles on the ascenders and descenders that emphasize the serious consequences of the message. Likewise, I chose a bright red background, like a stop sign, to draw attention to the billboard and create contrast with the white and black text. Lastly, I embraced the textual pun into the visual elements by designing a steep hill with a derailed car, indicating a ditch. This triangular shape creates visual interest and directs the eyes to the message.

The Results

This project taught me how challenging, and fun, it is to create a comprehensive design from scratch. I learned how to effectively employ design principles and copywriting techniques, and how to think creatively to produce an original concept. In the future, I would like to fix the hill so that the black outline on the bottom edge is not visible. Furthermore, I am interested in seeing if the copy would look better if it were two separate sentences beginning with capital letters: “Ditch your phone. Not your car.” I think this iteration could have more visual profundity.