Creative Conscience – Mens Health

Brief:Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 10.29.23


  1. As suggested on the website Movember is a campaign that would be great to illustrate for, the concept is quite quirky which is raise awareness of mens mental health and other issues (prostate cancer etc) and get people talking. So incorporating this in some way could potentially provide a good visual as people who participate in this create all sorts of different mustaches and even women wear fake ones as well as dyed ‘staches. []
  2. Another subject to tackle within the mental health area could relate to suicide prevention. Just over three out of four suicides (76%) are by men and suicide is the biggest cause of death for men under 35. this is an alarming fact which if illustrated nicely could help people to start a discussion.[]Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 10.43.18.png
  3. There are a lot of websites around that deal with mental health so it could be interesting to take the information from these sites/articles and turn them into a leaflet/brochure to help with awareness and spreading a positive message [] < this article hear i feel would be perfect for a printed leaflet as in it has appropriate information on how someone can help a person dealing with mental geo struggles as well as contacts to other resources. if i were to illustrate this it could help make it stand out and make it more interesting to read as well as getting people to pick them up.


Mental health illustrations:


Will Barras:

I really love the contrast between the fluidity of the ink strokes and the finely drawn characters and objects in these illustrations the mixture creates a vibrant perspective and the two mediums balance each other out.

Daniela Raytchev:

these drawings/collages seem to have a really abstract emotional output. the use of the colour to evoke a feeling definitely comes across in a way is sort of adding life to the illustration. the yellow ones in particular give me a feeling of pain and the way the colour are cutting into the loosely drawn figures kind of equates to how the character is being affected by the mental illness.



my first idea was to create a poster to advertise and spread word of the movember campaign so I basically drew the people from the website that had shared their support of the challenge. This included women wearing fake moustaches and tons of men with every possible variant of moustache style you can think of. but when I got the collage together and scanned it in this didn’t really seem to work or even fit that well with the brief of mental health so I pulled the plug in this idea and started from scratch. I do think the style works for the project I just think it could be executed a bit better, it comes off as a bit random and if I’m being honest it didn’t get much thought put into it as much as my other idea which I decided to go with. I just got excited by the concept and went with it.

leaflet draft

Above is my first attempt at putting my drawings and text together before I decided to draw out better more illustrative scenes such as the bed scene and the baking. I was also using a different font which was a bit clumsy looking and harder to read. I had intended to just slip my moustached character in and out of the text but soon realised this was a terrible idea because it was so boring and uninventive.

originally for the spot illustrations I decided to colour some of my drawings from the previous idea but it was just lacking in terms of how they related to the text. they just didn’t fit. so I proceeded to draw up other ideas for scenes like the cover which could work better.

These are a couple of the more finished drawings I did for the spot illustrations the first 2 are colour variants of 1 however I didn’t feel like it was drawn very well and then when I placed it into the text it didn’t feel right. the last image I actually decided to use as my centre illustration as it worked better on its own page rather than as a spot. I also changed the background colour to be more inline with the rest of the pages.

^centre and cover illustration before background changes. also a text variant which seemed to mismatch with the cover.



For this project I decided to respond to the brief by taking an existing article dealing with men’s mental health and turn it into and informational leaflet. this included the cover design, a centre illustration and a spot illustration, background pattern design as well as some typographical elements namely the titles. I chose to respond in this way after my first idea failed to fit the brief in a way that was interesting and communicative. This second idea I feel has more warmth to it while still evoking my illustrative style as well as being a functioning product. With this project I wanted to create a light hearted product which would balance out the darker subject which is based on suicide. I feel like I have achieved this in the fact I don’t think the drawings become patronising among the information and vice versa. Within my work as a whole I like to convey a sense of wholesomeness, the feeling that everything is okay and I want this warm feeling to come across. this is why I often use very saturated colours against my harsh black pencil lines. the rough scattered edge of the pencil gives a softer mark while still being quite graphic and dynamic and the blackness sitting against the bright tones level each other out. The inclusion of any sketch lines or planning marks from my under drawing I feel adds a bit of grit and a feeling of time as quite often with digital work compared to traditional work it can feel like its just appeared because of how clean and flat it is. this is why I wanted to draw most of text myself instead of repeating a font to much so this way it feels more considered and interesting to look at as quite often these informational leaflets are so boring to read. during the process of creating this leaflet I had to go through quite a few different versions and layouts as to get it to work and read better. the main changes I made where the inclusion of a faint background, this made the purely text pages less bland and flat. another change was instead of being a booklet shape with pages it is now a lengthier fold out which can be stretched out, I made this change because as my page numbers increased and I reorganised the format it just made sense production wise as well as for usability. originally my cover background was a darker blue rather than the clouds that are matching the other pages, it just seemed to clash to much visually because you were no longer turning the page in the same way so it remained visible and it look too harsh against the next page. During my research if I hadn’t have considered looking at articles to do with the subject matter I don’t feel like this project would have been as fully formed, it really gave me the inspirational boost I need to culminate my ideas. if I had more time to work on this project I would definitely try and include more of the spot illustrations and organise the text a bit more so that they could fit into the space because as the project came to a close I felt this was a little to much that had to been changed within the time constraints. fulfilling this brief has taught a bit more about using InDesign as well as more editorial techniques to do with layout and composition which I was previously unaware of. However in the future I don’t think this will be one of the lines of work I would like to get into but I could certainly use the skills elsewhere. It has certainly been an enjoyable project to work on because it make me consider how my character designs are functioning within an image rather than just being stood there like a character sheet.


Author: Mikeillustrates

21, illustration student, studying at Hull School of Art and Design. I have an inherent love for two things drawing and dogs!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s