AIGA FYI Poster show
Phinney Bischoff was one of several design firms in Seattle asked to be a featured participant in this year's FYI Poster Show Exhibit at the Seattle Design Festival. With the theme centering around infographics and typography, it was a fun challenge we couldn't turn down despite our busy workload.
The only criteria was that the poster content "activate, engage and educate our community." With that in mind, our design team brainstormed various subjects, issues, statistics, etc… In the end, we narrowed in on an issue that's personally heavy on my heart, so disturbing, yet so easy to ignore.
"Actual statistics are often unavailable, and some may be contradictory due to the covert nature of the crime, the invisibility of victims and high levels of under-reporting. Further obstacles include inconsistent definitions, reluctance to share data, and a lack of funding for research and standardization of data collection."
Statement by the Polaris Project on the Human Trafficking Statistics report summarizing the challenge of fully grasping the global magnitude of this crime.
It's the mind-blowing figures behind human trafficking, but more specifically, sex slavery, or the sex trade industry.
According to the U.S. Department of State Trafficking in Persons report1, approximately 800,000 people are trafficked across national borders every year. Of that number, about 80% are girls and women who are forced into the sex trade. With these statistics, I wanted to break it down to a number that we can relate to EVERY DAY. To understand that as we go through our normal daily routine, there are 1,800 more victims who are being forced into the sex trade that very day.
Our team explored a compelling typographic approach and deliberately
kept the poster simple and focused on communicating that one number.
It was also important to make sure that each victim wasn't just reduced to a number or statistic. To somehow convey that each dot represents the face of a beautiful woman or girl. (The poster reveals a subtle female profile when not viewed up close.) The intense rainbow of colors represent the beauty of their spirit, hopeful and unbroken, even as victims of such a dark and horrible crime. I wanted the poster to be striking, but gentle and respectful of who they are as people, no different from you and I.
1 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report, 7th ed. (Washington, DC: U.S. Department of State, 2007), 8.
To learn more about human and sex trafficking, and what we can do to end modern-day slavery, check out the Polaris Project website.