For the 2017 awards the NSW government run initiative, engaged myself and the Wildwon team to rebrand their premier sustainability awards in NSW.
Following the initial kick-off meeting and immersion my team conducted interviews with a range of stakeholders and individuals who represented our target audiences.
Interviewees included: Jackie Smiles, Sustainability at Blackmores; Rod Simpson, Environment Commissioner; Joshua Gilbert, Aboriginal young person; Sue Turner, Previous award winner; Jody Orcher, OEH Aboriginal Education.
These interviews yielded the majority of our insights which shaped the design principles and helped us develop the personas and customer journey maps that would inform my choices throughout the branding process.
It came to light that we required further insight into the target audience of young Indigenous Australians in order to make the awards as inclusive as possible and meet the project objectives of increasing participation in the awards from millenials and people from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
So to round out the interviews we conducted an additional Aboriginal consultation workshop gathering feedback on the current state of the Green Globe Awards brand and language, and tested out early design concepts and new brand voice. This workshop yielded invaluable insights around tone, look and feel and cultural sensitivities around the Awards which informed the project moving forward.
After the interview phase was underway, my team and i conducted a full day co-design workshop to really understand the ins and outs of the Green Globe Awards and reimagine the brand and experience of the awards.
This work built on the insights from the interviews and detailed personas representing various stakeholders in the project from past winners to sponsors.
To shake out what sort of visuals, typefaces, colours and brand devices could work for the new brand, i took the Green Globes team through a card sort exercise.
Insights were informed by the immersion, interviews, a review of best practise, lightweight UX audit of the website and nominations process, and the Aboriginal consultation.
01: The awards are perceived by those who know of it, as prestigious, rigorous, independent
02: There was caution about the awards association with NSW Government as this was seen as political
03: The biggest barrier to entry for grassroots initiatives and small businesses was the time it took to nominate for an award
04: The terminology that the Green Globe Awards uses currently does not include Aboriginal cultural practice or young people. The visual identity and language must be much more inclusive
06: The role of the Green Globe Awards is to be aware of all organic and self-directed sustainability activity happening in NSW and draw it together into a cohesive narrative
Audiences were looking to the NSW Government to actively set the sustainability agenda and direction for NSW and tell a compelling narrative around this.
07: Aboriginal people don’t need a qualification to understand their Country and continue caring for it - something they have been doing for millennia. Thus it makes more sense for Aboriginal judges to be included in the judging panel - rather than adding a specific award for this audience
08: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have kinship with the natural world: plants, seasons, stars, animals - they are custodians of protecting that kinship.
Particularly when communicating with Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander communities and organisations, the language of ‘environmental custodianship' including intergenerational responsibility, nature, place and protecting culture should be prioritised.
The big challenge with this rebrand was creating an identity that could amplify and appeal to the many different voices in the sustainability narrative across wider NSW.
The solution uses a grid system made up of interchangeable tiles with two distinct brand colours (forest green and turquoise) representative of land and water. This brand system will be used to tell a multitude of sustainability stories, tailored to speak to all of the targeted personas from the research phase.
For example, when creating artwork to inform our indigenous communities of the awards, images of natural, untouched NSW landscapes replace green eco buildings. When reaching out to young fashion designers putting sustainability at the core of their creative endeavours, textural images and iconography relevant to their story are used.
The image library for the new brand consists of a combination of built and natural environments, these images are connected in style by the 50/50 horizon line, which creates a fluid continuity between them. The suite of images will be added to year on year to keep the brand fresh and relevant, adding new faces, landscapes and icons as the brand evolves.
The biggest part of this storytelling concept included commissioning an local NSW artist to create an piece in our brand colours that can be used as textured tiles throughout the branding, updating the look year on year.
For 2017-18 we were incredibly lucky to secure the multi talented Otis Carey, a contemporary indigenous artist and surf champion from Coffs Harbour NSW.
Otis' contemporary optical art style which he meshes with the Gumbaynggirr people's traditional forms and techniques fits in seamlessly with the other imagery in the branding and really elevates it to another level.
Of the artwork Otis says:
“The artwork represents the healing spirit of one who has lost a loved one, or meaning the healing of country. The entwined underlying and overlapping lines represent the spirit and the connection to oneself or country, whatever the connection may be. The dots represent the healing elements of spirit or country and tie in the story as a whole. I am from the Gumbaynggirr peoples and Bundjalung peoples but this artwork is derived from the influence of my Gumbaynggirr peoples dreamtime.”