Sustainable Energy is Super! Poster project with Exeter College design students

Chloe Uden from Regen SW has been working with  Exeter College students to get fresh perspectives on how sustainable energy is super!

The ‘Sustainable Energy is Super’ poster design project was a fantastic experience for the Foundation Diploma Graphics students on so many levels. Firstly, the students had the opportunity to work on a “live” project for a real client. This provided the students with design industry experience as they were able to take a detailed brief, and working to a strict deadline, present their initial ideas and later their final outcomes to the client.”

“It enabled the students to learn more about various sustainable energy sources. We know that the sustainable energy sector will grow over the coming years and will provide work opportunities for these students, so it is really important that they are comfortable with the language and thinking which will emerge in our transition to a smart, low carbon economy”

“At Exeter School of Art (part of Exeter College), we are very keen to work with local businesses and organisations to provide industry experience for students in order to prepare them for future employment. This project project really fulfilled that initiative.” Nigel Lowe, Programme Manager for FDA Graphic Communication

Students were set the following brief:

Sustainable energy is SUPER!

We would like you to make a poster which shows a sustainable energy superhero.

There is no bigger challenge for society than climate change and no more important response than a rapid shift to clean energy. Such a dramatic shift in our energy system has big impacts on people: on their bills; in the way they use energy; and on their landscape. There is no path to a clean energy system that does not include the active participation of communities and the public.

Artists have played an important role in every cultural change, helping to draw us in, focusing our attention, inviting us to spend time with new ideas and allowing us to respond both meaningfully, constructively and creatively. Creative practitioners have a key role in enabling people to engage with the complex and challenging implications of climate change and clean energy.

“Over the past 200 years non-renewable energy resources have helped to bring about great advancements. But their consumption has also brought great blight upon the health of the planet and her inhabitants, and our easy access to them is soon running out. But change is just around the corner…

Right now is a great time to help contribute to this change. The more we can increase public awareness and acceptance of renewable energy and local applications, the more direct our path will be to a truly sustainable planet”                      Land Art Generator Initiative

So how does creativity inspire us to act? Well, creativity has proved a powerful tool for seducing, provoking and persuading us to drive 4x4s, buy into the latest fashion trends and drink water that comes from the other side of the world. If creative communications have persuaded us to consume in a way that impacts our planet for the worse, then it can be used to inspire us to try out things that have a more positive impact on the environment.”     Do The Green Thing

The brief:

  1. Choose an elemental force OR renewable energy technology
  2. Create an artwork according to the submission specifications
  3. Submit your artwork :

Tell us your name and your contact details

  • Tell us which sustainable energy resource or technology you have chosen.
  • The artwork should be 1110 x 1505 pixels (portrait).
  • Supply us with a JPEG for web – a .jpeg or .png of your poster design at 72ppi. This is for our website, our newsletter, our social channels and online press.
  • Supply is with a PDF for print – a .pdf of your poster design at 300ppi (if possible). This is for our any events we exhibit at.
  • Give us a short quote about your poster

Questions that may help you develop the sustainable energy superhero persona:

You have chosen an elemental force: Solar (heat), Solar (light), Solar (photosynthesis), Lunar (tidal), Wind, Wave, Hydro, Geothermal, Biomass, Biogas (landfill), Biofuel, Waste, Kinetic, Gravity, Algae

  • Write as many words as you can think of that you associate with this energy
  • Where do you feel this energy source?
  • How does it affect you?
  • What does this energy source do? How does it affect its surroundings?
  • How do we harness electricity from that elemental force?
  • Do you have any personal associations with this energy source or energy harnessing technology?
  • What if you could affect stuff in this way?
  • What would your back story be? How did you get these powers, what was it like?
  • What would your superhero name be?
  • What would you wear?
  • What would you do for the benefit of humanity with these powers?
  • What would threaten you?
  • How would you disguise/protect yourself?

Resources that may give you some inspiration:

What we will do with your artwork:

  • We will add some context: why sustainable energy is important
  • We will share your poster through all our channels to our subscribers at our events and in our publications.


Responses from students were:

"I wanted to take a more adult approach to the super powers of renewable energy; to appeal to first time buyers." Matt Bell - Instagram: thyearofgrey
“I wanted to take a more adult approach to the super powers of renewable energy; to appeal to first time buyers.” Matt Bell – Instagram: thyearofgrey


"I wanted to make my project interactive and engage people with the idea of renewable energy" Meg Thomas
“I wanted to make my project interactive and engage people with the idea of renewable energy” Meg Thomas


“This project really opened my eyes to renewable energy, now I’m excited I have designed something that will open other people’s eyes!” Robert Owens


“I was informed about global warming by the end of this project” Elliot Peckham


“I was surprised about how much I enjoyed and learnt on this project, allowing me to learn about renewable energies and create a piece that reflected this.” Liam Mead


“I really enjoyed this brief as it gave me the opportunity to express my interest in green energy through illustrative means” Callum Goddard


“This was a project I was expecting to really struggle with. However I’m very happy with the way it turned out. I hope it really spreads the word.” George Thomas


“I was rather overwhelmed by the brief at the start, but once we all understood more about renewable energy, I found it really interesting and enjoyable to relate to” Ollie Slee


“This project was a lot of fun and researching that renewable energy is actually affordable was eye opening for me” Calum May


“I had a lot of fun on this project and learnt a lot about the different types of renewable energy” Ben Vizor


"The focus on Superheroes initially seemed daunting, but this project actually meant I had to visualise and interpret energy in a way I never had before." Harrison Pidgeon
“The focus on Superheroes initially seemed daunting, but this project actually meant I had to visualise and interpret energy in a way I never had before.” Harrison Pidgeon


Next steps:

  • A prize will be awarded to the winning poster
  • Students will submit their designs to
  • We will share the files with community energy groups and the Regen SW network
  • We will explore options to display the works around Exeter City Centre

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