Whanganui UCOL graphic design students are helping Whanganui put its best foot forward.

The third-year students have spent the past two months designing their own promotional campaign for Whanganui and the results of that work are currently showing at the Edith Gallery in an exhibition titled Whanganui Campaign.

The students have shown remarkable imagination in their work.

Erika Reid's large posters are a twist on the "hello my name is" sticker.


They read "hello I love Whanganui because ..." and are filled in with lots of handwritten notes.

Another student produced a small newspaper aimed at encouraging big city dwellers to escape to Whanganui; while another made colourful posters from paint and photography.

Gary Francis's work is centred on a slogan - "devour the culture" - and includes T-shirts, stickers and video featuring the slogan and a cartoon taniwha.

"I wanted to make this appealing to young people, to youth," Mr Francis said.

Tutor Debbie Hahn said the students were given the choice between designing a project around a social issue, or a promotional campaign for Whanganui. As a group they decided on the latter.

"But they've all used different mediums, and they have different audiences in mind," Ms Hahn said.

She said this is the sort of work that graphic design students can expect to do once they graduate.

"We tried to make the project as realistic as possible. We wanted the students to answer the question: What's the design problem?"

The work goes towards the students' final assessment.

Ms Hahn said Lyn Cheyne, Whanganui District Council's promotion and marketing manager, had visited the exhibition and had been so impressed by some of the work that she wanted to use it.

-Whanganui Campaign runs until June 7, at the Edith Gallery, Taupo Quay.