When working toward the protection of our land and wildlife it is critical to be bold, in the Wilding Pines campaign for Biosecurity New Zealand (a department of the Ministry for Primary Industries) typeface depicted some of our most iconic birds soaring above a pine-filled landscape – fleeing from this un-natural habitat. This Fresh from the Field looks at the campaign outcomes which strike a balance between the negative implications of the threat and the positive outcomes of the solution.
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Wilding pines pose one of the biggest biosecurity threats to Aotearoa New Zealand’s unique natural environment. But research showed public understanding of this threat was low.
Left unchecked, wilding pines have a catastrophic effect on our native wildlife, plantlife and ecosystems. typeface was commissioned by Biosecurity New Zealand to create an engaging campaign to help protect our natural environment.
Throughout the design process typeface explored a diverse range of tones and approaches, each informed by detailed research helpfully provided by our client. This research and detailed understanding of the issue proved vital to delivering a clear campaign.
A couple challenges quickly became apparent. Firstly, typeface needed to challenge the perception that all trees are good, regardless of where they are growing. Secondly, we needed to build familiarity with the terms used, shifting from ‘wilding conifers’ to ‘wilding pines’ to help increase understanding.
The next decision was defining an area of focus. New Zealanders are rightfully proud and protective of our wonderfully diverse and unique native species – so it made sense to draw attention to the environmental impact, rather than economic implications or less tangible symptoms.
Once the environmental focus was agreed on we began to develop an illustrative library that would enable the campaign to represent New Zealand locations pictorially, rather than precisely. From this came a strong visual metaphor of showing wildlife fleeing from the scene.
By creating a flexible system typeface were able to apply the creative effectively across print, digital and animation. It also delivered unique individual solutions for each location that remained recognisable and consistent as part of the collective national campaign.
The aesthetic was designed to evoke a friendly and familiar eco-style look and feel. It was important to strike a balance between the negative implications of the threat and the positive outcomes of the solution. The result is a bespoke illustrative campaign rolling out in multiple locations across Aotearoa New Zealand.
The other good news story is that a significant number of forestry workers, who would’ve otherwise been out of work due to export restrictions imposed by COVID-19, have been re-employed as part of eradicating wilding pines and protecting New Zealand’s unique natural environment.
typeface‘s relationship with their client, Steve Janes is testament to the results too – “it’s been wonderful to partner with someone who is so immensely passionate about the cause as well as the design and it would be remissive not to credit his huge contribution to the campaign.”
Client: Steve Janes, Communications and Engagement Lead
Biosecurity New Zealand. Ministry for Primary Industries.
The typeface team: Abi Hutchings, Brittany Yang, Julie Bénard, Rosalind Clark, Matt Wood and Gray Buchanan.
Animations by James Philips.
Website by Ackama.