By Sarah Jane
client: Mindo Chocolate Makers
This work was produced as a two part project – brand strategy followed by sustainable package design. In the initial phase, I performed research on the social (cultural), economical and environmental aspects of chocolate making, through which I gained an intimate knowledge of the process from farm to table. I also interviewed the client and other stakeholders in an effort to learn as much as I could about their goals, perceived needs, behavior and values.
For the second phase of the project, I created sustainable packaging solutions for Mindo. I reviewed artisan chocolate making, explored the competition and market, looked at potential materials and processes, explored the supply chain of those ideas and finally outlined a solution that encompasses all the data collected.
client: Apostrophe Brands
Brand identity design – logo and stationary – for a beverage company. The design represents liquid elements without identifying a specific beverage. This was done by creating the illusion of three-dimensional droplets sitting on the paper. The printing was done with six colors – four, plus a metallic, and a gloss varnish on the droplet elements.
Recipient of an American Design Award.
By Sarah Jane
Visual Communication: The Environmental Impact of PVC Vinyl
This infographic was part of a Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) project I undertook about PVC vinyl . I compared the environmental impact of a PVC vinyl banner to that of a comparable banner made of organic cotton canvas.
This LCA looked at all aspects of environmental impact, from the mining of the metal for the grommets to the petroleum in the inks used for printing. I also calculated the transportation miles for all the elements of the final product.
During the course of the project, I learned how destructive PVC materials are to the ecosphere. PVC is the number 1 producer of dioxins in the environment. It is toxic to make and toxic to dispose of. Once manufactured, there are few options to recycle PVC, and it continues to break down, off-gas and produce environmental toxins throughout its time on Earth.View Entire Report
By Sarah Jane
client: Turning Point Macomb
When Turning Point, a domestic violence shelter in Macomb County, Michigan, approached me to redesign their website, I used the opportunity to put systems thinking and sustainability principals to work.
I first identified the systems involved; all inputs and outputs of the main and sub-systems. This gave me a good overview of all stakeholders and potential outcomes of the systems.
The next step was to identify the problems with the current system. This involved isolating patterns. What wasn’t working and why?
I identified pattern solutions that truly utilized human-centered design and improved the site use (User Experience) for all stakeholders in the system (users, Turning Point staff, as well as website managers).
View the Case Study
Tax Trilogy: Branding and Web Design
Tax Trilogy came to me with an idea for a social and informational website for tax professionals. After a brand strategy meeting and some break out brainstorming, Tax Talk Forum was born. Launching in January of 2013, Tax Talk Forum is a user forum and social network for tax professionals. The site is a fresh vision of professional tax resources on the Web and is unique in both its approach (young and social) and its content.
The Tax Talk brand was designed to be clean, professional and fresh. The orange shows the energy and youth of the firm, and subtly ties to the parent company Tax Trilogy’s brand of yellows and oranges.
The web design incorporates the branding and user-centered design to create an integrated blog, social network and forum.
A character named “Onerous Bastard Tax” was created as a humorous character to add levity to particularly difficult taxes. Each month a super tricky tax is featured in the “Onerous Bastard Tax” post. A Flash map graphic was created to display the various “Bastard Taxes” in the states in which they apply. The goal was to make the map fun and engaging. When the user mouses over a state, it is highlighted and a tiny version of the Bastard Tax character pops up. When the user selects the state, it enlarges and bubble pops up identifying the onerous taxes. When the user clicks a bubble, they are taken to a full explanation of the tax within the forum.
This poster was created as part of a project I developed to encourage community engagement, increase network connections and promote sustainable practices as a business strategy for small business. The idea began as a meme and morphed into a community event.
By Sarah Jane
Waste = Food: Systems Solution for Pet Waste
This was a project focused on finding a solution to the issue of pet waste by focusing on the principals of Cradle to Cradle (C2C) which requires the use of Systems Thinking. While there are existing dog waste collection services in some areas of the country, this system is different as it is not a residential (door to door collection) option, it utilizes public space collection. This community based- neighborhood by neighborhood- supported pet waste recycling system encourages direct community participation and convenience. Pet waste would be gathered at public “Clean Pet” Stations. The stations would supply corn based bio-bags for use to pick up waste. Residents would place collected waste in the nearest corner bin. Bins would be located strategically throughout neighborhoods and at public parks.
This concept “public” placement would solve several current issues with dog waste. The convenience would encourage people to use the system- drop it in the bin while on the daily walk. It would help eliminate the environmental hazards of dog walkers who do not pick up their dogs waste, either because they don’t have a bag handy or because it is inconvenient to carry the bag (such as when running or biking). Using stations instead of residence pick up will simplify the collection process. Each collection route would contain only 10-12 pick up locations that could easily be made with electric flatbed trucks which would be considerably more sustainable than the use of large, fuel based garbage trucks that would be required for residence collection. The collected waste would be taken to a collection facility shared with the cities lawn waste compost and would be put in a methane digester and used to create fuel for city recycling services. The remaining waste would be composted into lawn and garden compost and sold at local garden stores or through the city. Our city offers residents wood chips for a small fee. This compost could be offered in a similar way.
- “Clean Pet” stations would be positioned strategically throughout the neighborhood on street corners and at local parks.
- Stations would consist of a receptacle for the waste and a dispenser for bio-bags. All parts of the system would be manufactured from recycled plastic.
- Pet owners retrieve bags from station dispensers.
- Pet owners use bags to collect waste and deposit it into the station receptacle.
- Waste would be collected and bags refilled on a weekly basis.
- Electric powered flatbed trucks would be used for collection.
- Each collection “route” would be 10-12 stops. This would allow for small vehicle size and short distance routes compatible with the Electric Vehicles.
- Waste is taken to methane digester for two week processing.
- Methane obtained is used for energy to power city recycling activities.
- Remaining waste from methane digestion is composted with grass clippings and saw dust to create compost
- Compost is bagged and sold to residents and at local garden stores.
C2C – Cradle to Cradle
materials processing – Use solar income – Sun is used to heat the compost.
object creation – Create energy and nutrition for soil.
object transport – Small routes encourage the use of Electric vehicles
object use – Energy production for systems
object end of life – Nutrients for the earth