vintage new zealand tourism posters

Recently I started working on my project for Learn the Ins and Outs of Illustrator– a Skillshare class run by Brad Woodard. As I was researching for vintage graphic posters/advertisements that I could use for the project, I came across these beautifully designed vintage (1930’s-50’s) illustrated posters that were commissioned by Tourism New Zealand. Some of these posters are available through the online collection of the National Library Alexander Turnbull collection. There is also a beautiful book that has been recently published about the posters that were created for NZ Tourism, in the days before large scale photography and printing arrived- called ‘Selling the Dream- the art of early New Zealand tourism‘. It is full of big colour reproductions of many of the posters that were published- as well as essays. It is definitely worth a read if you are interested in learning more about early graphic design in NZ!

Here are a few of my favourite posters for you to look at:

By Howard Malitte
Mallitte, Howard Leon, 1910-1979 :Milford Sound, New Zealand’s Fiordland. [1960s]
Reference Number: Eph-E-TOURISM-1960s-01
Shows a colourful depiction of an elongated Mitre Peak, and a boat in the water in the foreground. The sky and hills have many colours.
By Marcus King
King, Marcus, 1891-1983 :Sheep droving in New Zealand. [1930s].
Reference Number: Eph-D-TOURISM-1930s-King-02
Shows drover on horseback at right foreground, with sheepdog in left foreground and sheep in middle distance. In distance is a high country valley, pylons and snowy peaks.
Artist unknown :Mountain daisy, Southern Alps, New Zealand. [1930s].
Reference Number: Eph-E-TOURISM-1930s-05
Shows three white daisy flowers and several leaves, against a background of mountains.
I love the colour palettes and the essentially ‘kiwi’ feel that especially the last two illustrations evoke- just beautiful!

I am going to be attempting to recreate this illustration as practice for the class:

Natives of the New Zealand forests - Karaka berry, tui [1930s?] Reference Number: Eph-E-BIRD-1930s-01 Poster showing a tui perched on a branch of a karaka tree. There are yellow karaka berries at the left.

Natives of the New Zealand forests – Karaka berry, tui [1930s?]
Reference Number: Eph-E-BIRD-1930s-01
Poster showing a tui perched on a branch of a karaka tree. There are yellow karaka berries at the left.

And here are the first stages of work on it…

starting to add shapes in illustrator
starting to add shapes in illustrator

I have also started a new pin board to collect vintage graphic illustrationscheck it out here.

If you are interested in taking the class (or any other skillshare class) as well, click through this link to get $10 off!

All images reproduced from the National Libraries Alexander Turnbull collection, with permission. Click on the images to be taken to the original catalogued image. 

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