Kingston & Wolfe Island Culture Festival promotional materials

In 2017, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper hosted the first Kingston & Wolfe Island Culture Festival to celebrate the area where the vision for swimmable, drinkable, fishable water started and of course, the people who made it happen. For seven weeks, events ranging from beach cleanups, a locally sourced three-course dinner, an open water swim competition, a literary festival, live music, and several other cool activities were scheduled to take place in and around the lake (weather-depending).

Being the first to create the visuals for this festival was pretty cool. I actually didn’t realize how big of a festival it was until I started working on the event brochure and saw all of the events together.

The poster was the first item to be designed. After that, I was asked to create the brochure (seen in the thumbnails below), an 8′ pop-up banner, a tote bag, and an accompanying postcard, which were all based on the poster’s design.

The Challenge

Knowing that the festival was focused on the Kingston and Wolfe Island area, it was important to me to literally show where these places are because people who follow Lake Ontario Waterkeeper live all over Lake Ontario’s watershed. Before designing the poster, I was also instructed to 1) keep the design simple, and 2) that the festival is hosted by Lake Ontario Waterkeeper (so I was to use elements from Waterkeeper branding).

The blue theme is from Waterkeeper’s colour palette. The green highlight is different for Waterkeeper, but it created a nice glow and went well with the summer outdoor festival.

For imagery, Kingston’s beautiful and historic downtown sits right on the shoreline of Lake Ontario. The buildings create a modest skyline that is sometimes the city’s postcard image. Wolfe Island on the other hand, is very grassy and green. Structures are limited to residential homes and local businesses. The tallest and most identifiable structures are windmills found across the island. I believed having these two identifiable landscapes, a ferry (since the ferry ride is part of the experience for getting to/from the island), and the lake itself best portrayed the place that the celebration is based on.