Billboard Design

Also known as outdoor advertising, design for large formats such as billboards and small billboards found in major cities have a tremendous effect on the surrounding society and culture. It has been said that you can tell a lot about an area from the outdoor advertising you see. Clearly, Billboard Design can sell products…
but can it sell ideas?

Social Commentary and Change

Designers use visual images and typography to send messages to viewers.
Sometimes design is used to get the viewer to buy something (Ad Design), sometimes to create interest in something
(Book and Movie poster design) and sometimes to get a viewer to think about a subject in society.


In this project, students will create a billboard design that asks the viewer to consider an idea within the society of Waltham High School.
Some topics of exploration:
  • The Diversity of WHS
  • Technology Advances at WHS
  • Practicing Empathy at WHS
  • Proms, Dances and social events
  • High School clubs
  • MCAS, SAT, ACT and college prep testing

As a designer, you will decide what the message is and where the design will be seen. Will your design be on a billboard in your neighborhood, on top of city hall, on top of the high school, in the school cafeteria or in the stairwell of the school? You must create a design that speaks to the students (and staff) of the Waltham High School. The question is… what will you say?

You project must include:
  • Images (from the internet or original)
  • Text (How much text is up to you)
  • A message (you must know what you are trying to say within the design)
  • A location (Take a photo of a location your design will appear in, then photoshop your final design in that space)

Finished Design: You will have two images for the finish; One of the final design, and another of the final design within it’s location.

Design Process
  1. Review the wiki space resources for examples of designs with a message
  2. Brainstorm ideas and topics with a fellow student
  3. Do the worksheet found here!

  1. Brainstorm the idea with the entire class
  2. Create three thumbnail ideas for the final design
  3. Start designing in Photoshop!


Creative Bloq: Top 10 Creative Billboard Designs

The Design Process Of Creating A Creative Billboard Campaign

Six basis rules of Billboard Ads

Top 10 Outdoor Billboard Advertising Tips

Best Cool, Clever & Unique Billboards and Outdoor Advertising

How Does a Company Create a Billboard Design?
The Bad Billboard project