The Oct. 11 vice-presidential debate at Centre College doesn’t feature a rematch, but the prize-fight themed vice-presidential debate poster the college will unveil today represents a sequel of sorts.
Centre Communication Director Michael Strysick said his staff kicked around other options, but nothing could top the original.
“We brainstormed a lot of different, very clever ideas, but we kept coming back to ‘Thrill in the Ville,’” Strysick said. “We also really like that it suggests historical continuity of the debate happening here in 2000 and returning in 2012.”
Unlike the last poster — yellow background, red lettering and blue images of the candidates — this one is red, white and blue apart from the candidates.
Strysick said Centre had to hold off sending the poster to press until after the Commission on Presidential Debates certified the candidates who will be participating, which happened Friday.
Twelve years ago, the theme for the poster was developed by Lexington public relations firm Preston-Osborne. This time, though, Strysick said the poster was designed by Tom Sturgeon, Centre’s assistant director of communications for visual and web design.
“We wanted to come up with a captivating design that portrayed the candidates in a positive light, and I think that was accomplished,” Strysick said.
Sturgeon was around for the 2000 debate when he worked on the college’s debate website. He said he wanted to carry forward the boxing poster look but also brighten up the colors and the background, to which he added light blue rays fanned out behind the text and photos.
“I wanted it to be able to stand side-by-side with the 2000 poster but also wanted the 2012 poster to have a more celebratory, more patriotic look,” Sturgeon said.
The campaigns got a sneak peek before the final proof went to press.
“It was one of the most fun projects I’ve been involved with since I’ve been here,” Sturgeon said. “I was set loose, and it didn’t have to have a certain (look).”
Strysick said the poster should be available early next week for $10 through the debate website and from the communications offices in the Combs Center. It may also be available at local businesses in the future.
The debate poster is one of many design jobs the college brought in-house for this year’s event. Strysick said visual and web designer Jessica Shields hit the ground running when she was hired six months ago, designing the debate banners that hang in the media center in Sutcliffe Hall and on the exterior of the Norton Center for the Arts. Shields also used responsive web design technology to make the debate website adaptable for viewing, whether it be on a laptop or a smart phone.
Sturgeon and Shields were among many Centre staffers pulling double duty as they continued to work on other projects during the run up to the debate.
“You could say a lot of folks have a second job right now,” Strysick said.