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Socially Conscious Graphic Design

Socially Conscious Graphic Design

Communication, Arts & Culture, Environment

326 Supporters

  • Green Washing

    Communication, Communication Design

    We all know how much green washing has infiltrated our lives. You see it everywhere. Businesses are using marketing and branding techniques to capture the "green" audience and make a profit. All in the name of the environment and sustainability. In the end these businesses will only hurt themselves for the quick buck. What these businesses fail to understand is that the socially conscious consumer might purchase their product or services once based on trust. If the consumer's trust is not reinforced they will not only lose that customer, but that customer will also tell all their peers and friends.

    A great example of this is a deli and coffee shop in Downtown Seattle. In the last year they recently re-branded their look (which worked perfectly well to the begin with) to appear green. They changed their colors from yellow, red and black to shades of green and incorporated a leaf into their logo. I had never eaten there, but had noticed these changes from the outside. They are well known for their roast beef french-dip style sandwich. I had some extra time one day between appointments and decided to get a drink and a snack. They had a nice space and I enjoyed a comfy few minutes before moving on to my next appointment. As I left, I looked for a recycling bin to leave my glass bottle. I could not find any form of recycling anywhere. I took the bottle with me to recycle elsewhere.

    How could an establishment that claims to be "green" not offer recycling? I ha...

  • Fortune Favours the Brave

    Communication, Communication Design


    “Don’t fight forces, use them” is a Buckminster Fuller quote that is especially relevant for designers in these times of converging economic and environmental pressures. I was reminded of this idea at Practivism - a talk on sustainability and communication design - when Brian Dougherty said, “We can all invent this - be the expert.”

    Dougherty was referring to the blossoming area of graphic design practice that weaves sustainability thinking into the outcome. It’s a niche ripe for becoming mainstream through the experiments of a set of brave visual innovators.

    Practivism is the hybrid word for practice and activism drummed up by the Society of Graphic Designers of Canada (GDC) BC team to describe this particular form of practical problem solving. The Practivism event in Vancouver this November was an evening of talks by Dougherty along with Eric Karjaluoto and Marc Alt. Marian Bantjes captured the synergy of the night in a heart-racing promotional poster.

    Eric Karjaluoto kept the audience giggling through his comedic slideshow which included an advertisement he found depicting an SUV driving into the sunset titled: “Because you Hate Mother Nature.” He introduced a new word he found on a blog: Depletist – a description of an individual with environmentally inappropriate behaviour. Karjaluoto is the author of the web site Design can Change which aims to bring the design community together to design positive outcomes. A self-described “mini-van driving, fast...

  • Tie Me To Your Favourite Thing!

    Community, Communication Design


    If you had to tie a red balloon to your favourite thing, what would you tie it to?

    As part of her undergraduate project Douceurs, post graduate service designer Lauren Currie (a.k.a RedJotter), took a dozen red balloons to a park in Edinburgh, and to encourage traditional communication between the public asked people she met to tie them to their favourite thing. Lauren captured the afternoon in this beautiful film!!!

    Originally posted on Thriving Too

  • The Affluenza Exhibition

    Well-being, Audio/Visual Design


    In collaboration with the Samaritans, talented photographer Hege Sæbjørnsen is organising 'Affluenza'... THE exhibition.

    With an aim to promote "creative self-expression as a powerful tool to develop an understanding of ourselves and the world around us", an exhibition of works from over thirty international multidisciplinary visual and performing artists, "...aims to inspire an open debate about the destructive impact of consumer values on our emotional well-being and our integrity as human beings."

    The call for artists has been launched, and entries will be selected by a prominent panel of judges, including Jonathan Barnbrook, 'Affluenza' author Oliver James and the Design Museum's Michael Czerwinski.

    The deadline for submissions is 30th January 2009 and the events are scheduled to begin in March. For full details about the project visit, and you can also join the exhibition's group on Facebook.

    Original Post

  • Because Studio

    Communication, Communication Design


    Proving that an ethical design career does not mean hindering creative professionalism, Loz Ives' Because Studio is one to watch!

  • Silk-logo_1_177_

    On Tuesday the UK Design Museum announced the nominations for the 2009 Brit Insurance Design of the Year award, including a nomination for the first EVER service design project to be included in the awards – The Social Innovation Lab for Kent (SILK), by Engine.

    SILK is a project and a platform Engine have been developing with Kent County Council (a local government authority in the UK) that helps users and providers of public services create better services together using design tools and processes.

    Read the full story at Engine and see a video here.

  • UK Environmental Book Design of 2008

    Environment, Communication Design


    Last weekend The Green Marketing Manifesto by John Grant was announced winner of the Environmental Award at the 2008 British Book Design and Production Awards. Designed and delivered by sustainable innovation practice More Associates, the hardback book reflects its content by reducing its embodied carbon and waste impact through its production methods.

    John Grant is author of four books on new marketing and was a former co-founder of St Luke's, a socially aware ad agency. He now operates as an independent consultant and recent clients include the BBC, Cisco, IKEA, innocent drinks, Microsoft and Unilever.

    In a blog entry, John notably highlights that books remain a relatively carbon inefficient way of spreading knowledge. However, as Luke Nicholson of More Associates explains "'s important to remember the impact of the lifespan of the text. If writers like John can create books that will be kept for decades by their readers, then the paper is used hundreds of times more efficiently than most of our print material."

    Congratulations go to John Grant, More Associates, to TJ International who produced the book, and to publishers Wiley.

    Via. More Associates blog.

  • Future Presents

    Arts & Culture, Environmental Design


    With Christmas just around the corner, it is time not only to think about your presents but also how you wrap them!

    In the UK alone, we use more than 8,000 tones of wrapping paper every year for our Christmas presents!! In a bid to challenge this problem, London based agency Represent have challenged the design community to develop innovative and eco-friendly solutions to the problem, by designing sustainable and totally tape-free ways to wrap a Christmas gift. Introducing Future Present!

    Twenty best ideas have been selected and are appearing daily on the Represent website and in the studio's ‘advent’ window throughout the month!. This is a great concept and an important consideration this christmas. So, what will you use to wrap your gifts!?

  • TYPE FOR CHANGE - Call for Contributors

    Environment, Communication Design


    Hi All,

    I would like to invite everyone to participate of my Master's Thesis project. Type for Change is a democratic platform addressing typography as an instrument for social change. More details are available on Facebook:

    TYPE FOR CHANGE - Promoting Positive Change

    Basically, there are 2 ways to contribute to this project:

    1) Creating a poster, t-shirt, font or dingbat focused on climate change

    2) Sharing it with your peers, friends, and students that would be eventually interested to participate of this initiative

    The deadline is January 31st, 2009.

    Questions, comments or suggestions would also be greatly appreciated. Please send a message to:

    gmachadodesign (at) GoogleGmail (dot) com

    Thank you for your time. Have a wonderful week.


    Gustavo Machado

  • The Guardian and IDEO "Inspire and Innovate"

    Communication, Communication Design


    In collaboration with IDEO, The Guardian newspaper have launched Inspire and Innovate, a column focused on innovative thinking and innovation.

    This exciting partnership and its discourse is evident of how creative processes, thinking and methods are valuable to social and economic arenas.

Whenever I draw a circle, I immediately want to step out of it. Buckminster Fuller

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Moderator: Kate Andrews