Do we all have the “design instinct”?


This is the very famous “Keep calm and carry on” poster that we are seeing more frequently. Originally, this design was created in 1939 during WW2 to be used as posters visible to the public. Millions of the these copies were printed, however they were never actually used. Only until 2000 were these posters making a return to the public eye.


For quite some time now I have been very interested by these posters. Not because of the history behind them, but because of the massive success that it has had in the last couple of years. This design is everywhere, on posters, cups, shirts, even  wallpaper. I have always wondered why the British public fell in love with this particular poster. From a design perspective I feel that it is very successful. And millions of others obviously agree. I would like to know why?

Is it the fact that these posters have been customised?


Could it be the variety of colours that they come in?


Is it more than that? Are the public noticing the successful design, the way the simplicity works? Getting in touch with their design instinct? Or just like fashion, have they been influenced by others to fall in love with these posters? Is it an element of “everyone has one so so should I?”

It would be interesting to have seen the effect these posters had if the font was different, or a specific element was change. I question the success of the posters of something might have been different. Perhaps a social influence would still have been a result of the popularity of these posters.

This is where my question comes again, is design instinct or influence?

Do we all have the “design instinct”?

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