On Thursday, 8 June 2017, the UK goes to the polls yet again. It certainly feels like we’ve had more than our fair share of elections lately. Here at CreativeMornings/CDF, we thought we’d take a creative stance on politics and speak to the makers of some of the art inspired by this latest General Election but also the recent Brexit vote to leave the EU.

Graphic designer Sean Rees

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Why did you design this piece of political art? 

When I got the invitation to contribute to the ME & EU project it sounded right up my street – Brexit among other events has created a massive divide in Britain and overseas and no matter what your stance, it’s undeniable that damage has been done. This was a chance, albeit a very small one, to reach out and try to re-connect.

When used correctly, particularly in politics, humour can be an effective way to engage people of opposing viewpoints, when we’re not on the defensive and let our guards down we are most able to listen.

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What has the response been like? 

All you can do it put it out there and hope it resonates. History has shown us the power of design to provoke and bring people together. We can play an important role in engaging people in our ever changing political, social, economic and environmental landscape. Or at the very least to think and engage.

seanrees.co.uk  |  Instagram  |  Twitter

Graphic designer Lauren Goodland

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Why did you design this piece of political art? 

When I graduated last year I always said I wanted to create work that helped to make the world a more positive place. We’re facing a massive problem at the moment with few people registering to vote, especially the younger generation. Voting is something people fought for and it’s so important but the turnout is still really low - at the local elections in Newport this year it was something like 36.3%, which is disgusting!

There’s a Charlie Chaplin speech from the film The Great Dictator that is still relevant. It shouldn’t be though, as it was created in the 1940s. I hope that the speech from that film (Chaplin’s first film with dialogue) would inspire people to register to vote, even if just a small percentage of people. I left a few prints in university campuses as it’s even more important that young people vote - it’s our future after all and we have the ability to shape it.

As a graphic designer I like to think that I have tools to be able to create things that people will see. The Government haven’t really done anything ground-breaking in terms of improving voter turnout, so I feel like it’s down to normal people - musicians, artists, YouTubers. We have the ability to influence!

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What has the response been like? 

The response was great - I even had an interview with BBC Radio Wales based around voter apathy. I had a few tweets from people that had managed to find the prints, but I have no idea who picked up the rest - I kind of like not knowing where they’ve ended up!

I do have a funny story about one ending up in a bin though, on my last drop-off too! Stupidly I left one on top of a bin in a shopping centre and as I was exiting in the lift the cleaner put it in the bin. My mum, being a top mum, went and stuck her hand in the bin and got it out. So sorry to whoever got the last print that was possibly covered in bin contents.

www.dorkfeatures.co.uk  |  Instagram  |  Twitter

We’ve found some other examples of political art & design being shared across social media. 

This is by designer and previous speaker Gavin Strange 

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This by designer Mark James

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And this spotted at the Little Man Coffee by The Amplifier Press

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