I was asked by Trinity Boston Foundation to help with visuals for their 2013 Annual Report. In my career I’ve read more than a few. and been one of the executive culprits putting lipstick on the corporate-pig for too many of them. While long on ‘fact’ they tend to be short on ‘truth’.
With little money in The Foundation’s budget for marketing costs, we wondered if this annual report could do double-duty. In the retail world, we call this a BOGO – Buy One, Get One Free.
While fulfilling a legal and ethical obligation to The Foundation’s current stakeholders, this could also be an opportunity to engage – even peripherally – a wider audience. Never underestimate the peripheral vision of your audience. This field of vision is rich soil for planting seeds of thought. This is where thoughts take root, becoming actions ripe for harvest.
I wanted to create something that recipients would not slip into a dark filing cabinet – at least not immediately. Perhaps it would be left out – on coffee tables, kitchen counters and public reception areas. Could 10% of the printed reports ripple outward into the broader community of neighbors and colleagues? Might 1% say ‘yes’ to this unexpected invitation into partnership with Trinity Boston Foundation?
We chose a 9×9 square book with a boutique, consumer-facing appeal to set it apart from the corporate norm. After all nothing says “bore me senseless” more than a deck of 8.5×11 pages with “annual-report” splashed across the cover. Inside, we laid out two parallel narratives. First, a narrative of efficacy and fiscal stewardship as told through straightforward text and clean graphics. The second narrative told through photography would act as backdrop to the first. These background images would invite a wider community into partnership with Trinity Boston Foundation.
It was my pleasure to deliver the photography and the graphics for this project. It was a privilege to work with a team that trusted my instincts. I think the result got the job done. I want to thank the Foundation’s staff for their patience on the final round of edits and David Trueblood who was a great author and partner throughout this project.
It’s our hope we’ve begun to establish brand guidelines for future communication. Next up: their website…?
To learn more about the Trinity Boston Foundation and its extraordinary role in the life of Boston, visit TrinityInspires.org