Mammoth Memory

Commercial – The art of creative services, referring to art for commercial purposes, primarily advertising. Art created to sell products, services and goods

(Pronounced kuh-mur-shuhl)

Note: Commercial art traditionally includes designing books, advertisement of different products, signs, posters and other displays to promote sale or acceptance of products, services or ideas.

To remember what commercial art is, recall the following mnemonic:

Commerce shall (commercial) always find a way of using art to sell products and services.

Commerce shall (commercial) always find a way of using art to sell products and services.

Art has been used to capture the eye of potential customers of products for many years, with advertising posters featuring interesting and appealing works of art.

Art has been used to capture the eye of potential customers of products for many years, with advertising posters featuring interesting and appealing works of art.

The acceptance of products in artwork has also been present for generations, with artists such as Andy Warhol using brands in some of their most famous works.

The acceptance of products in artwork has also been present for generations, with artists such as Andy Warhol using brands in some of their most famous works.

Andy Warhol, Campbell's Soup I, 1968

Commercial Art Project

To create a piece of commercial artwork, try producing a poster or sale image for your favourite branded product. 

For our example we will show you, step by step, the stages of creating a poster for a Noodle Pot.

The first step in the process is to draw an outline, in the centre of a page, of your favourite product.

You can take the product and draw it from life, or use a photo of the product and the Mammoth Memory grid method to copy it onto your page.

The first step in the process is to draw an outline, in the centre of a page, of your favourite product.

Once you have the product outline in place, we can work around it to build up an interesting and striking design.

Text is an important feature in commercial art. Product names, information, pricing, slogans, along with other information are often included in some examples. Try adding a bold, striking word in your image. It can be the brand or product name, or just a word that relates to the product.

Try adding a bold, striking word in your image.

Now your text is in place, we can start to make the image more striking. Add interesting imagery around the central object, but keep it simple, as you want the product itself to be the focus. We have added fork shapes and noodles to ours.

We have added fork shapes and noodles to ours.

Rather than a plain background, mark out the layout for a patterned background, or one with an interesting feature, like the lines we have used that almost look like rays of light.

Rather than a plain background, mark out the layout for a patterned background, or one with an interesting feature, like the lines we have used that almost look like rays of light.

If you are happy with the design you have created, use poster paints, or gouache paints (available in craft shops) to colour the image. These paints work well as they are matt, and do not create washes like watercolours. 

Rather than blending in any shading with a gradient, alternate between a dark tone and light tone for each ray. You can use the Mammoth Memory Value page to help work these out.

If you are happy with the design you have created, use poster paints, or gouache paints (available in craft shops) to colour the image.

Commercial art.

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