Andrew Nicolson

Senior Digital Designer at Front Page.

Breathe

Risograph poster

Graphic Design / Collaboration

Collaboration with Chris Whyte for Chariso Press (at Front Page)

The Chariso Press is an evolving project that hopes to connect and highlight creatives along with the charities that they hold dear. Founder, Chris Whyte, approached five members of Poster Project to collaborate, along with him, on three risograph posters for the "Walking + Talking" chapter of the project. Working in pairs we were encouraged to get away from our desks, take a walk outside, talk to each other, and connect. He even supplied a short playlist for additional inspiration, along with some sage advice from a friend, “You’ve got to walk the dog at least once a day whether you own one or not. Otherwise, it will wreck the house.”

I was paired up with Chris and we quickly arranged our first meetup: a day with the kids. He arrived at the house and we instantly fulfilled the key directive of getting outside. We, along with my two children, carried large bags of old clothes to the donation point in Tesco carpark. We dropped them off, picked up a few essentials from the supermarket, and walked home again to spend the afternoon drawing. Chris made DIY sketchbooks for each of us and we set about filling them with shapes, lines, scribbles, doodles, and sketches. Then we we all sat down to a well-earned lunch.

For the second meetup we decided to donate blood at the local blood transfusion centre. Neither of us had given blood in a long time and figured the gesture fit well with the charitable nature of the project. Obviously being a combined two pints down we decided to replenish fluids in the local watering hole. This gave us a great opportunity to really talk and get to know one another better. We spoke about our pasts. Our love of design. We revealed secrets. Voiced frustrations. Laughed lots. Celebrated our mutual love of the Evil Dead movies. And, of course, scribbled some notes and doodles.

For the final meetup Chris came to the studio to meet me for lunch. We took a scenic walk through Glasgow Green along the river. It was an unusually bright and clear day and nowhere near as cold as it had been. We took lots of photos as we passed different shapes, textures and interesting sights along our route. We stumbled across a rock installation in one of the gardens. It formed a spiral path leading to a single standing stone. Some children had been drawing on the rock surfaces and had left behind one of their chalksticks. We dabbled in a bit of juvenile vandalism ourselves before grabbing something from Greggs and parting ways.

Armed with our shared experiences—and the content we’d gathered from them—we set about creating the poster together. Digitising drawings and textures, tracing photos, generating abstract shapes, and summarising each meeting in simple keywords, the poster began to materialise. Each version was rapidly different from the previous in the beginning, but slowly started to take form. With tweaking, finessing, and colour testing, we settled on a final design. One that we both love, and is equally meaningful to us and our collaboration together, but also lends itself perfectly to being interpreted by others.

All three prints are available to buy on the Chariso Press website with 100% of the profits going to National Association for Children of Alcoholics. Printed at the fantastic social enterprise, Out The Blue and on GF Smith Colorplan 175gsm Ice White.