Step out onto the street today and it seems likely at some point you’ll be handed a promotional flyer of some sort. But what would convince you to keep that flyer and attend the event advertised? A high-impact, memorable and gorgeous design would certainly help!
If you’re creating your own flyer, browse our pick of eye-catching designs for festivals, gigs, exhibitions and retail events to get your creative juices flowing…
1. Festival Karsh
A bold and modern series of flyer designs from designer Charley Massiera and Uniform creative consultancy for the 2009 Karsh Festival held at the Canada Science and Technology Museum in Ottawa. The anchor of the design – black-and-white portrait plus a brightly coloured overlay – gives the flyers flexibility and uniformity even with different images and colourways.
To mimic the look of these flyers in InDesign, try contrasting black-and-white photography against shapes set in a single bold colour. Paste simple coloured vectors directly into InDesign, or use the shape tools available in the Tools panel.
2. The Rolling Stones
The iconic band has an equally iconic logo, which they use across all promotional materials. This flyer, for their 2014 Zurich concert, gives the logo a letterpress-inspired, vintage revival. Chaotically placed stamped type gives the flyer a fun, informal feel.
If you’re designing a flyer for a music gig, try mixing up your typography for a carefree, exciting design. Pick up some typography tips and tricks here.
3. Wellen Gentleman’s Pop Up Shop
Pop up shops are an increasingly popular way for a brand to showcase it’s retail offerings to a new audience, or to take advantage of increased footfall at a particular location or event. The marketing is especially important – how else are people going to know about the shop opening? This fashionable and simple flyer design for surfwear brand Wellen Gentleman’s really does the job. Clean, unfussy typography displays the essential information clearly, and the aspirational photo at the bottom of the layout is given space to breathe.
Don’t be afraid to give your flyer layout some space. Crowded flyers can look overwhelming and unattractive – a pared-back design communicates calm and elegance.
4. The Garden Exhibition, Allan Nederpelt
Though technically a poster layout, this beautiful design for an art exhibition at Brooklyn-based gallery Allan Nederpelt follows the principles of high-impact flyer design – a single strong image paired with strong, legible typography. Contrasting a classical still-life painting with modern sans serif type and a trendy bracketed frame around the edges, this design is intellectual, modern and intriguing – everything you’d want for an exhibition flyer!
White text against darker images looks clean, modern and helps the text to demand attention from the reader. Experiment with white type on dark backgrounds to switch up the traditional black-on-white print format.
5. London Jazz Festival
Designed by Jonathan Akrofi, this beautiful flyer design for the 2014 London Jazz Festival instantly evokes the late-night feel of an atmospheric jazz club. Graphics edited in Photoshop have been incorporated into a layout and teamed with minimal white type. The core design extends onto more detailed posters and tickets to create a unified, moody feel across all the festival’s marketing materials.
A strong design is key to a flyer’s success. When creating your own flyer layouts, be sparing with images and text; and try to give your design a key focal point that draws the eye. Focus on highlighting the title of the event in a creative, unusual way.
Design by Jonathan Akrofi
6. LA Canvas M.F.A. Event
Again demonstrating how effective a black-and-white photo background with sparing splashes of colour can be, this flyer design for an LA Canvas event is eye-catching, modern and hip. Designed by Rachel Many of Shoot.Click.Wind, text set in both black and white divides up the information, creating an ordered layout.
When designing your own flyer in InDesign, flush different sections of text to the left and right of the page to visually separate large chunks of text and make it easier on the eye.
7. Scene on the Street Event
For this fashion event led by Elle Magazine at W Time Square Hotel in 2012, an elegant flyer design combining a single street style shot with clean white text and partially transparent overlays helped to raise awareness and give the event an upmarket feel.
Transparent overlays are a great way of partitioning off sections of your flyer, providing clean space for text to sit. Reduce the opacity of coloured sections on your InDesign layout by going to the Object menu and selecting Effects > Transparency. Learn more about working with images in our Images with InDesign Tutorial.
Have you spotted any flyer designs worth an honourable mention on InDesignSkills? Please share them with us in the comments below. Find more design inspiration here.