RBC Ottawa Bluesfest, CityFolk & Marvest 1

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Easily the most fun I’ve ever had working on contract. I mean, who wouldn’t want to work for one of the top rated music festivals in North America?
The designs I was asked to do were fun and creative, and occasionally required some problem solving. Both management and my colleagues were impressed with the quality and speed of my work. Below you’ll see some samples of the designs I created for Bluesfest.

Program Guide

I was asked to improve on the design of the previous years’ program guide and map for Bluesfest. The layout called for 4 folds so that it would be small enough to fit it a pocket or purse.
With my experience I could see that the design could be made cleaner and easier to read. While retaining the overall marquee theme used across all 2015 Bluesfest marketing materials, I used typography and a lighter colour scheme with shading to help to achieve my goal.
I improved the accuracy of the festival site map and simplified the detail to only show the important locations with fun icons.
In the end, I was given a lot of positive feedback with the map and new program guide.
Bluesfest Program GuideBluesfest Program Guide

Daily Grid

This print piece was distributed daily during the festival because of last minute changes to the schedule. Working to a very tight deadline, I made any final changes and sent each one to the printer the day before.
Using the marquee theme, I designed the overall look for the daily grid as well as the small advertisement pieces that changed day to day. The reverse side maintained the look of the larger program guide schedule.
Both patrons and my colleagues commented on how much they liked it because it was so easy to read and it had all the information they needed.
Bluesfest Daily Grid


The theme for CityFolk 2015 was a quilt pattern, and multicoloured text which is reflected in my design samples below. It was used on everything from posters and signage to the car deco wrap on the Folk Wagon.

Tourism Brochure

The tourism tri-fold brochure was a fun challenge that I was asked to tackle. It needed to include a lot of information and elements to spread the word about CityFolk and Marvest.
CityFolk Tourism Brochure

As you can see below, there was a long list of band names for both CityFolk and Marvest, so I decided to colour code them for both festivals.

CityFolk Tourism Brochure

Program Guide

After designing the program guide for Bluesfest, I was asked to do the CityFolk program. The program included the two stages in CityFolk and the 14 Marvest venues. Using the colour coding idea I had with the tourism brochure, it made sense to carry it through to the program guide. It wasn’t easy to get everything to fit, but I was confident it could be done.
CityFolk Program Guide

Daily Grid

I designed the daily grid for CityFolk and Marvest. The CityFolk front ad space was sold to Warner, but Marvest was available to include the map I designed which added to its convenience.

Site Map

There were a lot of firsts for CityFolk this year, including a new name – and because it was the first year that the festival was held in Lansdowne Park, I knew the map was going to need last minute changes once the equipment and vendors arrived on site. Being prepared was key so, prior to the event, as soon as my supervisor returned from a visit to Lansdowne I quizzed him for updates and immediately changed the map.

Volunteer T-Shirts

Following the CityFolk multi-coloured quilt theme, I designed and paired the shirt material and ink colours. The final result was great to see at the festival.


I know what you’re thinking because that’s the first question I asked when I heard the name as well. “What is ‘Marvest’?”.
After learning what Marvest was, I came up with an idea to help with the marketing and branding of the festival using an explanation so the public could quickly learn about it. The design I came up with could be used throughout the marketing materials as well as on the website. I presented my idea to the marketing director, who loved it and it ended up being a very helpful tool when anyone asked “What is ‘Marvest’?”.

Marvest Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 8.48.48 PM

The Canada 150 Festival Express

I designed this leave behind piece for the executive director of Bluesfest, Mark Monahan, who has put together a plan to resurrect the Festival Express that originally took place in 1970. Mark’s hope is to have it take place again in 2017 to help celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. Since it’s still in the very early planning stages, I’m not able to give out too many details, but I can say that it will be a modern twist on the original train tour.
Because it is in such early stages, a logo, theme or campaign has not yet been created and it was up to me to come up with an initial look.
I selected contrasting typefaces from the railroad era and a classic poster image to give it a reinvented feel, rather than copy the original art nouveau look that was popular throughout the 70’s.
Canada 150 Festival Express

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