Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Concept of binding for inside pages

The inside pages of the Z-bind booklet would be folded, perforated and bound in a special way to enhance experience of the graphics and textual messages.

Sheet of paper measuring 430 mm width X 132 mm height

Sheet is folded along the centre

It is folded again leaving 105 mm from the folded edge.

Two folded sheets are folded and aligned so that the folded edges come on alternate sides.

The sheets are perforated 35 mm away from the folded edge on one side.

They are then centre-stapled along with the cover.

It is then possible to tear the page along the perforation, which then reveals information within.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A mother swan often takes her very young cygnets across water by perching it under its wings. The image conveys the message ‘make your child feel secure’.

This image was created originally for 'feel secure' using two opened locks to indicate a parent and child confiding in each other. Here again the semiotic fault was pointed out by the guide Mr. Tarun Deep Girdher - the image of locks conveys 'locked up' rather than 'secure'. It was therefore replaced by the image of swan.

The illustration makes a positive visual signal for parents to play a role of supportive understanding and co-operation with the child

The illustration is used with a turnable flap which hides the eyebrows of the child. When the flap is lifted the message is instantly conveyed — ‘open up’, seize the hide and seek, so that you may know if your child is in trouble.

The illustration is the cover image and sets the tone for the user, as it needs an attitude of understanding among parent and child.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The illustration shows a lock with the silhouette of a child in the place of the keyhole, to suggest the feeling of being ‘locked’ in the situation of CSA. Because of various complications in play, the child is unable to speak up and suffers quietly.

I was suggested by a senior, that the above image did not quite look like a child, and that I must take care it doesn't convey a perverse message. This was a real eye-opener. Attention to the detail, especially attention to semiotic meanings is a must.

To drive home the fact that it is often a member of family or close friend or relative that may abuse the child, the illustration depicts an apple rotten from within.

The illustration is based on the game of Snakes and Ladders. The play in the visual is the snake coming to the position ‘home’ denoting that the worst dangers of CSA are faced at home (or within seemingly secure environments).

The illustration conveys ‘Listen to your child’. It is meant to highlight the fact that in most cases, merely patient listening on part of the parent can help avert a lot.

Illustration for showing the effects of CSA. The concept of shadow was used to depict the ‘shadow’ cast on the victim that haunts him/her for a lifetime. The barren tree depicts the possible inability of the victim for intimacy in relationships.

Illustration for showing the nature of CSA, to be used with ‘Forms of CSA’. The concept of shoes was used in order to highlight the basic power-play involved in CSA.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Ms. Ketki Doshi Sanghvi is a young activist dedicated to the cause of Child Sexual Abuse and had worked with FACSE (Forum for Child Sexual Exploitation) in Mumbai for several years. I referred my initial illustration design concepts to her, and gradually refined them under her guidance.

She has been not only actively dealing with cases of CSA, but also dedicating herself to building knowledge and spreading awareness on the subject. Interaction with her not only validated my selected approach(communicating to parents), but also did away with some of my presumptions. In conversation with Ketki, some of the salient points that emerged were:

1. Communication must be clear and unpretentious. No beating around the bush

2. The core issue is lack of awareness in society.

3. Only targeting mothers (or even keeping it limited to parents), may not work in all cases. The communication must be flexible for the understanding of any caregiver.

4. The illustrations are grossly unclear.

5. In the model of the campaign, Medical Practitioners and Hospitals was an important link that was overlooked. She emphasized the importance of their role in this issue.

are the key points to be addressed while dealing with this subject.

Ketki welcomed the idea of designing a booklet for parents, but she however pointed out the limitations of the medium. She shared with me several posters designed by art students and some by advertising agencies. It was both an opportunity and challenge that the medium I had chosen was a first of its kind, to the best of my knowledge.

Ketki encouraged me to develop the content, as I had a clear idea of the book — its voice, look and feel. She suggested the essential things to be included in the content, based on which, I created the following structure:
• Introduction to the subject
• Safe and unsafe touches, and educating the child distinguish
• Forms of CSA
• Short term and long term effects
• Symptoms
• Myths about abusers, and CSA can happen within the home or by persons of trust
• Why children keep quiet
• Listening and giving confidence to the child

She provided her resources for my reference, and I was amazed to find among them the first ever resource book on the subject, which I had received from Mr. Tarun Deep Girdher; while the first was in Hindi, this was a Marathi translated copy.

Content Planning

The important messages to be conveyed through the booklet are:

a. The child’s experience of an unwanted, abusive touch.
b. The child’s inability to assert his/her experience
c. That it happens in the family, and is more potential from trusted individuals.
d. That the child needs to be listened to and helped.
e. Listening is key to protect the child.
f. That CSA can have far reaching and life-long effects, if not dealt with appropriately.

A Z-bind publication allows a single book to present two separate units of information. This was the first choice for the solution.

As my target audience is parents, I thought of schools as the most effective and legitimate platform to reach out to a large number of parents. This can be undertaken through PTA meetings, where experts shall conduct workshops.

A set of four booklets would be designed in order for each of the four topics as mentioned in the approach. The core of these booklets would be ease of understanding for the parent, and would be suitably illustrated.
One of the booklets — Know it+Prevent it would be handed out to all parents complementary at the end of a workshop. This would contain links for other three topics. The books would be colour coded for differentiating among the topics.

The books would be made available in schools’ administrative offices, or by mail on order, and sold at a nominal price. They can be made available in regional languages, for ease of understanding.

Developing a Graphic System

Target group:
Children under 9 years of age
+Residing in urban India

Target audience :
Parents (Approximate age group 30 to 40 years of age)

Giving information and messages furnished in parts, and according to specific level of requirement of a parent or care-giver, was the basic idea, based on which two approaches were modelled.

Approach 1

Designing a system that would address the various levels of requirement, exclusively yet cohesively, was necessary. It was essential to solve: A/ how can we classify requirements of information and B/ how shall the appropriate information be reached to the respective audience.

A/ The levels to be addressed:

1/ What is CSA + what happens from a child’s point of view (The most important part to be understood by a parent)
2/ How to identify if your child has been or is being abused + How to handle disclosure
3/ What to do if your child is abused + Applying laws and getting aid
4/ How to heal a child from CSA
5/ Age-appropriate body- education and preventive education to children against CSA.

However the first level of knowing what is CSA, is a precondition to addressing all other levels of the issue.
Hence every link in the the system must serve basic + specific information and provides links to others.

Based on this approach, concepts were developed.