Creating Versatile Infographics for Non-Profits
One of my recent projects working with Asante Africa Foundation was to create an infographic. Right away, I was daunted by the task. I had taken pages of notes from the team meetings, and the thought of creating a simple graphic from such complicated conversations seemed impossible.
Looking back on the project, one of the most helpful questions I asked was “ “in one sentence what is the message that you want to get across?” The response I received set the stage for the whole design. “We want to show how our 3 programs work together to create successful youth leaders.” Great!
My next step was to break down their request as much as I could. I was left with three main ideas: 3 programs, working together, and creating successful leaders. At this point I came up with my first draft of ideas. *Disclaimer. No judging – it was very rough but I had to start somewhere!
After presenting this to my team, we chose to go with the top option, since it seemed the most unique and easy to follow.
Once we all agreed on this direction, the modifying and tweaking process began. At this point it was time to get down to designing.
Since the Asante Africa Foundation brand uses a lot of large, bold images, we decided to continue in that direction instead of using the old stick man. We also decided to add a category at the beginning of the infographic to show the challenges that youth in East Africa face, and explain why they would enter into the program.
Here is a shot of my second revision.
Now I was getting closer to telling the story. I used an image of younger children on the left to show that they were younger when they entered the programs. I used an image of older graduates in the outcome area on the right.
From this revision we noticed that the ribbon design, flowing across the image, made the students in the outcome stage of the design look like they were further away. We thought it would fit the design better if the ribbon angled upwards to show growth and achievement while the students hold their certificates, instead of showing them far away in the distance.
The next challenge was to take away the images and see if the graphic conveyed the same message. This was important because I wanted the infographic to be versatile enough that it could be used on multiple platforms, which might not allow for images.
Here is the finished text version.
Here is the finished image version.
For the final touches we wanted to be able to use the infographic to highlight each program individually. To do this, I created 3 versions, each to match one of the Foundations programs.
And finally here is the version reproduced for their 2015 Annual Report. We condensed the design and decided to incorporated a newly defined problem, and impact area.
Hopefully this breakdown of my experience with building a versatile infographic will be helpful!
good luck on your infographic adventure!