Fortunately this year I was able to attend part of Cucalorus Film Festival. Walking around downtown it felt like a private event that only people cool enough were attending - which I guess is a good and bad thing. The theaters I found myself in, Jengo's playhouse, Thalian Hall, and the CFCC Union Station, were sizable enough to hold an audience, (Thalian and CFCC more so than Jengo's), yet all maintained a sense of intimacy that made the audience feel special, feel closer to the films they watched. Thalian Hall was my favorite. I realize it probably always looks historic but this design for the theater takes you back in time, to the days when films were rare gems, a spectacle to go see. This theme works for a film festival that is premiering new films, works of art. We use Lumina theater for Visions, but we should somehow design the theater to feel like space, like our audience is in another world while attending a Visions screening.
There were large projections of the Cucalorus logo displayed on buildings downtown - a very nice addition to the posters and signs already advertising the festival; (also adding to the feeling of a secret society, a simple logo displayed where all can see, some know exactly what it is, while others are intrigued). A large projection of the Visions logo is absolutely something we could do in Lumina, or perhaps along walkways on campus, (buildings might be harder to get permission for).
Cucalorus remained true to their theme of monsters. They also remained true to a single style of bumper that revealed the donors of the festival. To open a film, 2D animated monsters in muted oranges and reds quickly moved across the screen pulling a white banner that contained the logos and/names of sponsors and donors. The entire animation lasted approximately thirty seconds, not long at all. An old-school marching band-esque music played in the background, which concluded in an applause while an enlarged monster "swallowed" the screen, leaving it black. It was all very simple, yet beautifully composed. It followed the rule I know I have tried to live by this semester when it comes to designs, that less is more. Simple designs work well, and they especially work well following a time period's style, which is what Cucalorus did, as Visions is trying to do by channeling the 1940s space theme. Rather than place Cucalorus into a specific time period, its 2D designs and muted colors simply portray a time period in the past, serving as a reminiscence of older, simpler days.
In between films, a red screen with the Cucalorus logo pasted in the left corner would flip between the logos and names of sponsors and donors, names were revealed in a simple font, nothing flashy, and business/program logos were left to their original designs, revealed on a square, white backdrop.
I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at Cucalorus, the films, the visuals, the setting, and the people. Yet, as a result of seeing another's design for a film festival, I know that we have an extremely creative group of individuals in Visions that can make the designs of our festival even more appealing.