I spent the summer of 2018 as an Americorps volunteer at Agraria, a farm that had recently been bought by Community Solutions through a massive effort of fundraising through the Yellow Springs community. They bought a commercial corn and soy farm that had been sprayed with pesticides and chemicals, which are now still depleting nutrients from the soil. Through regenerative processes such as permaculture, they are not only providing education to the community but also combating climate change.
I created a series of small icons which could be used on both their website and their print materials such as a map outline of their plans. The illustrative aesthetic was chosen as a visual cue of the organization being in an ideation phase with Agraria. It also helped staff, key stakeholders and visitors to visualize what is to come of this farmland.
If there is something that Community Solutions is not shy of, it is big ideas. I wanted to encapsulate how important their work is as they have many initiatives that improve their community and environment at large. Before beginning my time as an Americorps VISTA with them, I was dedicated to going to their events and conferences while also volunteering my time with physical labor on the farm. It was through these experiences that I learned a lot about our environment and the politics associated with protecting it. I wanted to share this information with anyone who finds themselves so lucky to step foot upon Agraria, and so together with their directors, I designed three large posters to hang in their barn, the meeting place for most of their events.
Finally, to further educate visitors about the many species on Agraria, I formulated a few pamphlet templates with a systematic design. Upon my arrival as a VISTA, Community Solutions had just worked with a designer to brand Agraria, but their flyers and informational documents all looked different. Working within brand guidelines, I designed a template that information and be added and adjusted to over time. If you are interested in illustrative print design, I would love to hear from you. I think especially for organizations that are embarking upon new territory, an illustrative element can express the ideation process in a way that makes sense to outsiders.