Visual Communication - Bachelors
Leave a Message is a seamless fusion of a social campaign and brand identity centred around a deceptively simple yet profoundly thought-provoking question: “What would you tell your younger self?” Its primary objective is to enrich human connections and support mental well-being, bridging the gap between the physical and digital realms. This initiative recognises the pressing need to cultivate empathy and compassion, not only for others but also for oneself, amidst the relentless pace of the digital age.
In 2022, a study conducted by mental health foundations unveiled a pressing issue – social isolation affecting a significant 800 million young people, roughly two-thirds of them, with profound impacts on their mental and physical well-being (headspace, 2022). To address this societal challenge, ‘Leave a Message’ leverages the power of storytelling to bridge generational gaps, fostering genuine human connections and promoting kindness.
The campaign thrives on the beauty of sharing life stories and wisdom, encouraging us to pause and reflect on the knowledge we’d share with our younger selves. By allowing individuals to share their wisdom and read what others would impart to a younger generation, the ‘Leave a Message’ project aims to create a sense of community where people feel heard, understood, and not alone in their experiences. While the primary target audience is young individuals, offering them crucial support, it also serves as a healing platform and an opportunity to connect with individuals of all ages, genders, and ethnicities. This social campaign aims to create an inclusive community where people can openly share their stories and perspectives, effectively reducing social isolation and nurturing a sense of belonging.
The name ‘Leave a Message’ was inspired by extensive research into various methods of responding to the profound question, ‘What would you tell your younger self?’ This research revealed that leaving handwritten notes, emails, voice messages, and more were common ways to address this question. Each response, resembling a star, carries a unique story. The art direction incorporates a space-themed motif, conveying the idea that, just as in the cosmos, every individual is one of a kind. The campaign features characters named ‘Little Star’ and ‘Grandpa,’ both of whom symbolise unique experiences and are portrayed through playful, hand-drawn illustrations.
The central element of the project is a digital interactive art display, a temporary pop-up installation across Queensland. Passersby can view responses from others and contribute their own by scanning a QR code via the Message Portal with their mobile phones. They will be directed to the Message Portal page, where they can enter their response to the question ‘What would you tell your younger self?’. After hitting ‘Share’, their response will appear on the large digital canvas in a few seconds.
As part of the campaign merchandise, the hand-illustrated picture book features the campaign characters, Little Star and Grandpa. Inspired by the stories shared and responses collected during research and data collection, ‘Guiding Little Star’ is a story that resonates with individuals experiencing anxiety and reassures them that it is okay to feel regretful about their experiences at times. The storyline follows Little Star on a heartfelt journey as he learns the importance of resilience and self-discovery from Grandpa. This heartwarming tale reminds us that, even in the face of life’s challenges, we are never truly alone on our path to growth.
The campaign also offers a selection of collectible merchandise, including t-shirts, tote bags, postcards, and stickers. These pieces serve as tangible reminders that we are never truly alone on our journey and of the supportive community of Leave a Message. The die-cut stickers, which include a QR code, allow users to scan and be led to the official Instagram page, where they can learn more about the campaign.
To maintain a strong social presence, the social campaign also fosters community engagement by posting notable responses that brighten feeds with meaningful messages shared by participants on Instagram. Handwritten and digital text formats are preserved to capture the heartfelt essence of individuals leaving messages to their younger selves, while colour schemes and styles remain consistent with the brand identity.
Meet Chloe, a visual designer and creative storyteller based in Brisbane. She is passionate about all things design, particularly branding and concept development. Chloe is well-versed in user-centric design, encompassing both user experience and user interface expertise. She approaches design challenges with empathy, infusing everyday experiences with playfulness and personality. Outside of project work, she can often be found dedicating herself to improving her design skills through personal projects or admiring products with thoughtfully crafted packaging.