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Exhibit Design is a Journey to Your Destination

by Gwen Parsons 8. November 2012 23:26

Social & Scientific Systems, Inc. (SSS), a longtime client of Nomadic Display Capitol, was asked to develop a 5,000-square-foot space for the Latino Caribbean Diaspora Collaborative (LCDC) in the Global Village of the 2012 International AIDS Conference, which was held in July in Washington, DC. We interviewed Beverly Valdez, Creative Director at SSS, about this remarkable space and the inspiration behind the design.

Gwen: Beverly, what were the goals and requirements for this massive exhibit?

Beverly: The LCDC members wanted to showcase the diverse HIV/AIDS community programs from five geographic regions—the Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, South America, and the United States. They wanted to establish a communal environment for attendees that would offer networking opportunities and cultivate regional cooperation. Panel discussions, speaker presentations, and special performances would take place in the space. The exhibit also would need to support videos and interactive displays.

Gwen: How were you able to blend the diverse stakeholders and activities into a unified setting?

Beverly: The LCDC proposed the theme Bridges Between Neighbors, because it suggested connection, interaction, harmony, unity, and solidarity. Then, early in the planning process, SSS surveyed members of the LCDC to solicit their vision. The design team conceived a visually stimulating space to encourage participation and interaction among diverse groups.

The design concept called for the overall space to be viewed as a community with a central plaza, reminiscent of a town center, surrounded by exhibits that functioned as “neighborhoods” for the regions, which were connected by bridges. The plaza would serve as the epicenter of the installation for sharing educational, social, cultural, and scientific events. The uncluttered atmosphere would be welcoming to visitors, offering informal seating areas such as park benches and colorful groupings of tables and chairs to foster networking.

Then, we worked with Nomadic’s design team to finalize the layout and individual exhibits for the regions to display information about their HIV/AIDS programs.

Gwen: The graphics for the exhibit are so exciting—the imagery, the vivid color palette. Tell us about the design process used by you and your team.

Beverly: The design team created a core graphic concept that would tie the neighborhoods together, yet allow individuality for each of the five geographic regions.

The arc of a bridge, symbolizing connectivity, was blended with images drawn from each region’s natural environment, architecture, people, symbols, icons, costumes, festivals, food, and textiles.

Next, we drew up a vibrant color palette representative of the rich cultures and flavors of the LCDC. Each region was assigned a dominant color scheme.

  • Hot pink embodied the bright spirit of Mexico.
  • Yellow-orange reflected the warmth and traditions characteristic of Central America.
  • Green echoed the environment of South America.
  • Turquoise blues evoked the islands of the Caribbean.
  • Red symbolized the passions and energy of U.S. Hispanic communities.

Gwen: The International AIDS Conference drew 24,000 attendees from more than 180 countries, and more than 8,000 participants visited the LCDC’s exhibit. Congratulations!


Why Color is so Important to Your Trade Show Display

by Kat Shea 24. October 2012 05:18


Although trade shows and events can appeal to all five senses, the presentation of your company, products, and brand is first communicated visually. So it's no surprise that the graphics you choose will play a critical role in attracting visitors to your display.

Color is one of the most important elements in effective design. It stimulates our brains, engages us, and influences our mood.  The use of color boosts our memory retention.  According to one study by University of Loyola, color increases brand recognition by up to eighty percent. Color even influences our purchase decisions. 

So, given that the right color choices are essential, what colors should you use for your trade show display?  

The natural place to start is with your corporate colors, of course.  After those are taken into consideration, the next step is to look at how different color schemes may be utilized throughout your exhibit design. This can be helpful when selecting flooring colors, laminated surface colors for counters, or even booth furniture such as sofas or bistro tables and chairs.

Work with your designer to explore different color groupings that will maximize the appeal of your display. Using a twelve-part color wheel, locate your corporate colors. Selecting colors adjacent to your corporate colors will create an analogous color scheme. While one color may dominate, using the colors next to each other creates a harmonious grouping for a serene, comfortable design aesthetic. 

On the other hand, if you select colors directly opposite your corporate colors on the color wheel, you will end up with a complementary color scheme.  The benefit of this option is that opposing colors often create maximum contrast, which creates a vibrant aesthetic.

A third option is the triadic color scheme, where you select colors evenly spaced around the color wheel.  For this type of scheme, you should choose one color as the dominant one, and let the other two serve as accents.

Color is a powerful tool when it comes to display graphics. What are some of the fun ways you’ve incorporated color into your trade show display?



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