Josie Doser

Positions on Design

by Svenja Prigge
April 18th, 2019

Calling Josie Doser a graphic designer would be quite the understatement—having been well acquainted with the graphic scene even before she applied for university, she’s been involved with four editions of the independent, student-run graphic design festival CAPTCHA, organized parties, lectures and workshops and has pushed her own style beyond the expectations of some of her conservative professors. She is currently working her magic at the graphic design studio Unfun in Berlin.

You went from studying art history and philosophy to making fun, experimental posters. Why the change of heart?

[JD] At the time, my friend Tim Lindacher was already studying graphic design. I always came along with him to events and so became part of the graphic scene in Mannheim. I met designers like Jean-Pierre Mayer, Simone Chilar, Steffen Hotel, Götz Gramlich and Boris Brumnjak, and participated in the CAPTCHA workshop of 44flavors before I was even a student. I found my love for posters in exhibitions like 100 Beste Plakate, and with my friend Julia Kobel we organized a guest lecture for poster design with Götz Gramlich at our University—all of a sudden I was surrounded by posters. My first experiments in poster design were music lyric posters—I just put on some old songs from The Doors and went at it.

You were introduced to the scene by your designer peers, but you’ve since developed your own unique style …

[JD] My colleague and friend Ksti Hu stayed at our place during one of the CAPTCHA festivals. I talked to her a lot, because I felt like I didn’t have my own style. Her advise was to lock myself in a dark room, copy stuff that I like, and it would lead me to evolve my style. That really helped me, so props to her!

Josie Doser
»For me, music and design go hand in hand.«

What else drives your style?

[JD] When my friends are around, we always create a shared library of images to work with. We just sit together the whole night with some wine, choose random words and fill our CC library, and then we try to do something with that. I really love that atmosphere. I like to work at night with music playing. Music is an obsession and it’s quiet obvious in my posters. For example, when I listen to techno, then it’s splashy and crazy. For me, music and design go hand in hand.

… and when it comes to clients?

[JD] I always try to get a moodboard from them first. I really like overload: scratches, textures and 3D art, but that’s not for everybody. However, some clients book me because of that, like Berlin-based publisher Present Books, who recently published »SEEN 03:00am«, an anti statement to minimalist style. They invited female contributors only, among them Ksti Hu, Julia Kobel, Sophia Krasomil, Lena Manger, Greta Thorkels and myself.

Regarding technologies such as Augmented Reality—where do you think it’s going, the poster?

[JD] Two or three years ago, I first came into contact with animated posters during a workshop by Josh Schaub at CAPTCHA. I think that the future belongs to the moving poster. I was in Shanghai last year and on the subway they had displays in the tunnel. They moved as quickly as the train, so you could see animated advertisements on the subway. That was crazy ·

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