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Quantity Produced


Production Cost

Ink was free, and only paid for the paper and the wood to cut

Production Time

Design: 2 days
Carving: 3 days
Printing: 2 days

Dimensions (Width × Height × Depth)

39.5 in × 15.375 in

Page Count

Paper Stock

White Hahnemuhle German Etching

Number of Colors

3 Custom Mixed Colors
1 blind emboss




ITC Franklin Gothic
Bookman Old Style


For some people, “fun” is carving a piece of wood for hours on end, and “funny” is, well, things like birds. Some people are probably just Seth Akkerman who created this poster for his own amusement. I could recount what he told me, but best to hear it from him:

My rules when working on personal projects is that they need to make me laugh, I need to be proud of the craft, and if possible I like to work in inside jokes (usually this part results in the humor). For whatever reason, birds have been a common theme in my work lately so I took that concept and tried to think of ways I could push it differently.

The wood plate method came about because for whatever reason, I really enjoy the tediousness of carving for hours and hours on something that could be printed by a machine relatively fast. I feel a much greater connection to the piece afterwards knowing that I was able to successfully carve every element from a piece of wood including the extremely small type. Also, I think the texture that appears in the end print as a result of the actual wood adds a level of interest for the end viewer to offer them something past the initial glance.

I also chose to use the hand symbols as part of the motif because, as I said before, birds have been finding a way into my work already and I enjoyed the humorous connection between bird watching in a “line-up” field guide structure of actual specimens but conveyed in a non-realistic manner. You can still see the actual birds (thus the shadows for people who couldn’t stretch to get there).

The blind emboss in this piece is the inside joke that I mentioned earlier. This portion is the real exclamation point on the whole piece but only if you see it. I like the idea that someone may not even see them for the first few days or weeks it is in their possession. Then, one day, they happen to look at it the right way and they get it. In my eyes, this is even more value added for the end audience. It gives them something extra to show their friends when looking at it. Also, the blind embossed shotguns are the reason for the play on words “Fowl approach” meaning both birds and that bird watching with guns would be fowl as well.

The only ones who could probably cry foul, or fowl, at this poster are fowls, or fools.

Bird Watching Poster --- Bird Watching Poster --- Bird Watching Poster --- Bird Watching Poster --- Bird Watching Poster


Recent Posts



Bird Watching Poster


Production Method



Design, wood cutting, printing: Seth Akkerman



Seth Akkerman

This post was published in the original layout of FPO so all images are smaller. Project descriptions as well as production lessons are quoted in the main content area.

Post Author


Author Picture

Armin Vit

Editor of FPO and co-founder of UnderConsideration LLC.

More: Online / On Twitter


Date Published

April 12, 2010


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About UnderConsideration

UnderConsideration is a graphic design firm generating its own projects, initiatives, and content while taking on limited client work. Run by Bryony Gomez-Palacio and Armin Vit in Bloomington, IN. More…

blogs we publish

Brand New / Displaying opinions and focusing solely on corporate and brand identity work.

Art of the Menu / Cataloguing the underrated creativity of menus from around the world.

Quipsologies / Chronicling the most curious, creative, and notable projects, stories, and events of the graphic design industry on a daily basis.

products we sell

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Prints / A variety of posters, the majority from our AIforGA series.

Other / Various one-off products.

events we organize

Brand New Conference / A two-day event on corporate and brand identity with some of today's most active and influential practitioners from around the world.

Brand Nieuwe Conference / Ditto but in Amsterdam.

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Favorite Things we've Made / In our capacity as graphic designers.

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