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Monday, September 20, 2010

Red Cross Blood Service Poster


To design an A3, full colour, poster for the Red Cross Blood Service promoting the donation of blood by tertiary students. The posters will be distributed to all university and TAFE campuses in Australia. You must leave a blank space for time and location details.


What is the Australian Red Cross?

  • The Australian Red Cross is one of the many national Red Cross Societies around the world. The Australian organisation was established in 1914, nine days after the commencement of Word War I, by Lady Helen Munro Ferguson, the wife of the Governor-General Sir Ronald Munro Ferguson, when she formed a branch of the British Red Cross.

  • Much of the World War I home front activities such as knitting socks and rolling bandages was done by local Red Cross branches.

  • Today there are more than 30,000 trained volunteers and the entire Australian Red Cross program is funded by public donations and corporate partnerships.

  • The Australian Red Cross supports and runs many different and important projects whilst raising awareness to the Australian public about the current issues or problems which may affect them. Some of the projects which are either run by or assisted by the Australian Red Cross are Blood Services, First Aid projects, Disaster and Emergency Services, Youth and Education.

What is The Red Cross Blood Service?

  • The Blood Service is a division of Australian Red Cross, and subscribes fully to the humanitarian principles that are fundamental to that organisation. Australian Red Cross provides the vital social and professional umbrella under which the Blood Service can carry out its important work with a clear mandate and consistent identity.

  • Before the Blood Service came into formal existence in 1996, the collection, processing and distribution of blood products throughout the country's health system was managed by individual State and Territory Red Cross Transfusion Services. The establishment of a national blood service has facilitated new levels of national and international co-operation, resulting in improved consistency, quality and safety across Australia.

  • Is a large professional organisation with more than 3,000 employees working in scientific, medical and support services, the Blood Service is remarkable in that its very existence depends on the continued support of more than 520,000 generous Australians who give their time and their blood as a gift or donation.

  • The Blood Service also plays a central role in the health system of Australia, and is funded almost entirely by the governments of Australia who manage the health system.

  • The Red Cross Blood Service is an iconic Australian organisation.

How blood is used






Posters by various organisations

Further Research

The main issue faced by the Red Cross Blood Service is the lack of donations, with blood supplies running increasingly low. As the task at hand was to encourage uni students to donate we decided to get an indication as to why people do not donate blood. We turned to facebook asking friends.



The responses we obtained from this research included:
  • People who do donate blood do so because one day your friends or family might need it, free food.

Out of all the replies there were only 3 people who actually donated.

  • People don't donate because of being scared of needles, they are gay and therefore not allowed to donate blood, iron deficient (anaemic), Piercings and tattoos, Hepatitas A, Pregnancy, worked in abottoirs,  don't weigh enough, lived in England in the 80's, claiming to be a vampire - whose blood cannot be used by the average human being, hate the sight of blood.

We found that the most common reason why people do not donate is because they are afraid of needles.


After looking at the research we brainstormed as to what may make blood donation more attractive to people.
  • make blood donation less scary
  • let people know that it is not time consuming
  • say that even 'just once' can make a difference
  • do not go for a shock and awe effect
  • show different age groups, genders and nationalities
  • tackle negatives helping people overcoming fears
  • suggesting to take a friend
  • let people know they will feel rewarded for thier efforts, feel good about themselves
  • you may need it one day so why not give it?
  • facts: one donation can save three lives, save a life, make a difference
  • you can donate to specific people if you know someone in need
  • nurses are friendly and comforting
  • you can get a numbing patch
  • free snacks and food afterwards
  • information - where and when
  • eye catching poster

Due to the fact that we are aiming our poster to appeal to university students we decided that we should try and make our poster appealing to the demographic.

We wanted to stear away from the typical donation medical type posters as obviously they were not working so well. We researched festival posters and other posters of interest to spark ideas of interest and to make our posters more youth orientated and appealing.


    We also looked into pop art in creating appealing visual aesthetics.

    Contrasting other reserach, we also looked at utilising colour in a minimalistic fashion to get the point across.


    We firstly came up with the tag line: Donate Blood today, after all it's in you to give.  We adapted ideas from the Canadian blood service to come up with this.

    Concept #1.
    Our first concept was developed from the idea of utilising the tubing used to transfer the blood from you to the donation bag to create an image. Using clear tubing and red food colouring we came up with the shape of a heart.

    We liked the idea but thought this may be more appealing to an older demographic and decided to steer away from the medical aspect of donating blood.

    Concept #2.

    We developed a simplistic approach that was straight to the point and minimalistic yet still ignited attention. The poster would pinpoint significant facts and benefits of blood donation.

    Poster 1 encouraged donation through the fact that one donation can save three lives.

    Poster 2 encouraged the food aspect of donation which is appealing to uni students, you will be rewarded for your donation. Treat yourself. Donate Blood today. After all it's in you to give.


    Poster 3 encouraged donation for purposes of self satisfaction. It is a rewarding experience. It reads: There is no better feeling than knowing you have saved a life. Donate blood today. After all it's in you to give.

    We really liked these posters, they were clever, simplitstic and appealing but we thought they worked better as series campaign. As the brief stated to create one a3 poster we kept looking at other ideas.

    Concept #3.

    Getting back to a grungy festival look we experimented coming up with the following two posters.

    The first utilised colour to grab attention. It focused on the signle donation and it's ability to save three people. It also embraced the food factor which is appealing to broke university students. The tubes from the heart act as life lines.  We liked the idea of this poster also.  

    The second idea utilised photographs of people in order to familiarise the viewer with a real problem. The bombardment of images leads you down to the short and sharp message: a single donation can save three people's lives. Donate blood today. After all, it's in you to give. The numerous photographs is an attempt to create awareness of the many people relying on your donation and as you could potentially save three with your donation may encourage people to get friends to donate also. The poster collaborates ideas from festival posters and also renders a pop art stylistic form. The bold colour imediately draws an audience making them want to find out what it is about making it appealing to the specified demographic.

    Final Concept

    It came down to a group vote as we thought each concept could potentially work. This was voted as our final due to reasons discussed above.

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