As you may know from some of my earlier writings, I dream of the day when science is just as much a part of the typical person’s conversation as, say, the latest antics of Paris Hilton1. This is not just because I happen to be a scientist, but because we’re increasingly becoming less of a democratic society when on the one hand there are more and more issues dominating our lives that are basically science issues (energy sources, aids and cancer research, stem cells, global warming, air and water quality, food safety, etc) and on the other hand science is still largely feared, and left as the province of the “geek”, the “nerd”, and all those other select few people in business and politics who are essentially controlling our everyday lives by being handed the scientific reins of society. So, as part of reversing that trend and restoring equal opportunity in the broadest sense, I like to think that we can have increased comfort with science concepts and images infiltrating and enriching our everyday language.
I was delighted therefore to see (a couple of months ago now) the poster campaign of the Los Angeles Film Festival for 2007. It is a perfect example from that society that lives in my dream. It unselfconsciously has encapsulated the two big themes they wanted to convey quite marvellously. On the one hand, there’s no doubt that it is about film (you don’t even need the rest of the poster to tell you this) as there is the film reel, and on the other hand, they want to remind you without a doubt that this is a land of film, and they did this with a simple slogan that put to rest any doubts about their intent in twisting the reel to bring out a double helix structure: “It’s in our DNA”. Excellent. I’d like to shake the hand of the designer(s) who came up with this. (Read a bit about the DNA molecule -which contains our biology’s “blueprint”- and its double helix structure at the Nobel Prize site.)
Here is the detail from one of their posters that I snipped from their website:
What’s probably accidental is that some of these excellent posters (banners, really) are still up around the city. This was fortuitous, since I’d forgotten to take a shot to show you during the festival itself. I took the above (right) shot well over two weeks after the ending of the festival, on a lazy slow Friday afternoon cycle up from Downtown through Echo Park and Silver Lake. There was a long row of several lamp posts with the banners, stretching for some blocks along Sunset Boulevard, near the landmark Brite Spot Cafe, all somewhat appropriately, to my mind.
Have you seen any other nice examples you’d like to mention? Let us know.
- Here’s a thought. In Paris Hilton’s recently announced plans to “relaunch” her image, she’s said to be looking for a serious cause to champion. Perhaps she might be interested in supporting some fun and valuable science education projects, for young and old alike. So, as one never knows who is reading the blog, let me say: We can start right here in LA, Paris, so you won’t have to give up the nightclub life to do it. It’ll be a truly original project for someone from your walk of life. Get in touch – I’ve at least a thousand ideas we can implement.[return]