I chose to create my poster using Inkscape, as it was free so I could work on it on my own computer. I began by tracing the flags of Europe using the Bezier tool in order to vectorise them, so I could use them in my poster.
I then created my basic structure, giving the flags a white border to stand out against the background and putting them at the top of each timeline.
I added a gradient from red to green to give the idea of progression from low life expectancy to high life expectancy, as a higher life expectancy is considered better, and green is a colour associated with good.
The countries were arranged alphabetically, and so the heights of the lines seemed quite random. Even though I did quite like the look of my poster like this, I thought I should give it more focus. As the theme was ‘Who lives the longest’, I decided to focus on the concept of life and growing, and so I had the idea to rearrange the timelines into the shape of a tree, having them symbolise branches.
I think this gives my poster a better structure, and also allows for easier comparison of the life expectancy between countries. Though I think this colour scheme is striking, I thought that to further enhance the idea of this being a tree, I should change the colours to something more natural, while maintaining the gradient to display progression.
I chose to use green to brown for the branches, as this is the common colour combination on most trees, as well as changing the background, title, and scale to more natural, earthy colours. I initially tried having a light blue background (second image), to represent the sky but I did not think this worked well with the colour of my tree. In the end I settled on a dark green, as I think it best enhances the colours of the branches. This makes my poster much less harsh on the eyes, and relates back to the theme of the tree growing naturally.