As I was leaving Whole Foods today I noticed a huge box by the door for a canned food collection. On the box was this image (pictured left) (along with the Philabundance logo) stuck to the side. I saw it and thought it was a cute and clever solution for a serious problem. I wondered though, was "squash" in parenthesis necessary? Would I have gotten it without someone pointing out to me that the squash graphic is representing the verb tense of squash? Did someone in the presentation meeting say to the designer, "People aren't gonna get it, you HAVE to put the word "squash" under the squash." Redundant?
I've been there before where the marketing department underestimates the intuition of everyday people. But then I wonder if us designers assume that everyone is going to get it. It's a constant battle, designers just want to be creative and brilliant (and of course get the message across successfully), where marketers just want to sell, or in this case make people understand that they should be helping others have a decent meal. Yes, it's a battle, but the two need each other tremendously. Marketing keeps designers' design functional, while we designers keep the marketers on their visually creative toes and push the bar so that we're not giving everyday people the same thing over and over. That right there is bad news for communicating a message, idea, brand, or product.
For all I know it could've been the designer who made the decision to explain the squash and beet graphic. Either way I thought it was an interesting interpretation without the typical imagery we see regarding hunger. Please visit Philabundance to learn more on how Philly is trying to "beet" hunger.