December 6, 2016

Behind The Scenes Of The Tunbridge World’s Fair Poster Design

by Corrina Thurston


As many of you know, the end of this year has been FULL of commissions for me, many of which I haven’t been able to share with you yet because they’re Christmas gifts.

However, this week the Tunbridge World’s Fair marketing committee is unveiling the poster design for next year’s fair, which means I get to show you one of the projects I’ve been working on!

Back In September…

I got an email from one of the members of the Tunbridge World’s Fair marketing committee asking if I’d have any interest in designing a poster for the 2017 fair. They heard about me from a previous artist they’d hired and friend of mine, Katie Runde.

At first I wasn’t sure. Poster design isn’t exactly something I’m used to doing, and I wasn’t sure quite what they were looking for. So I decided to go meet with them while the 2016 Fair was in progress.

Part of the Tunbridge Fairgrounds, 2016.
Part of the Tunbridge Fairgrounds, 2016.

Rare Breeds

The theme for the 2017 fair is Rare Breeds, which is to focus on their rarest breeds of livestock. After meeting with the committee I got a feel for what they wanted and decided I’d give it a go and accept the challenge of this project. With camera in hand, I wandered around the fairground with the rare breeds specialist (because I wasn’t sure what was a rare breed and what wasn’t!) and took photos of all the animals that I could. I took so many photos, in fact, that my memory card became full and I had to resort to using my phone for the last few images.

One of many cows photographed. Some were easier to photograph than others!
One of many cows photographed. Some were easier to photograph than others!

The Drawing Process

Taking photos of the animals was one thing, but then I had to lay out an image that would make sense as a poster, leave room for the writing that was necessary, be interesting to look at, and include all 9 animals!

I got the idea for having the animals all looking over a fence because that’s how a lot of my best photos came out, like the one above. The ones that I didn’t get photos of in that way, like the pig, I ended up having to use some imagination!

Usually my commissions are based on a single photo, so this was very different for me, and quite a challenge. But it was also a lot of fun to do.

Once I got the layout in my mind, and then a line drawing down on the mat board I was working on, things started to come together. It took a long time, especially drawing in and around all the spokes of the ferris wheel for all the layers in the sky, but I like how it turned out.

Tunbridge poster drawing in progress.
Tunbridge poster drawing in progress.

The Final Poster

The final poster.
The final Tunbridge World’s Fair poster for 2017.


The final image for the 2017 Tunbridge World’s Fair poster is above. I hope you like it! It will be the image used for the posters for the 2017 Fair, but also on T-shirts, pins, packs of playing cards, and other products at the Fair for sale in the Floral Hall.

I’ll also be at the Floral Hall a couple days during the Fair for signings! More details on that will be released closer to the date, so check out my “Events” section of the website when September 2017 gets here!

4 thoughts on “Behind The Scenes Of The Tunbridge World’s Fair Poster Design

  1. Very nice!

    1. Thanks so much, Lisa!

  2. Hi Corrina,
    Happy New Year to you! I love your work and I think you’ve captured the essence of a small town country fair – the Tunbridge Fairgrounds are so beautiful – so quintessential Vermont! Lovely barns and buildings nestled on a beautiful hillside, so picturesque on a sunny, fall day.

    1. Thanks so much for the great comment, Audrey! I appreciate and am so glad you like it! 🙂

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