International HIV/AIDS Alliance
Parsons Fellows Norskov focused on preparing materials for Hepatitis C day, the world's largest campaign to prevent new infections and deliver real improvements in health outcomes for people living with hepatitis C. However, Fellows Norskov was tasked to create outreach posters, shirts, stickers, and other educational materials that targeted people who did not participate in risky behaviors or were unaware of how easily Hepatitis C is transmitted.
Attempting to boil down Hepatitis C to its essential ideas, Fellows Norskov came to two conclusions. One, that it is transmitted through blood, and two, that it is an infection; it steals life from another being. Based on these two core ideas, the motif of a blood droplet was used to show how Hepatitis C is transmitted. Even if a person didn't know anything about Hepatitis C, a look at the logo would lead that person to guess it has something to do with blood. The logo also has a clear center, specifically designed to steal whatever colors are behind it, to portray it is infecting the design it is used on. Additionally, to make sure the logo has more life than just its uses in Ukraine, Fellows Norskov released it under a Creative Commons licence so that other organizations may use it as well on their Hepatitis C outreach materials.
Another major task in Ukraine was the creation of Hepatitis C posters to be placed in the subway stations. Playing off the idea that many people with Hepatitis C don’t know they have it, Fellows Norskov and staff member Anastasia Bezverkha came up with the slogan, “Do you see the C?” While in English it did not flow well, in Ukrainian it is somewhat clever, and translates closest to, “Do you see this?” [Ти Бачиш С?] with the “C” and “this” being the same sound in Ukrainian. After the concept was established, the idea to portray hidden Cs in different contexts was discussed. Photoshoots were arranged to show the hidden Cs in dental equipment, under a jacket, on manicure equipment, and tattoos.
In tandem with the posters, Fellows Norskov was asked to do the layout and cover design for small booklets to hand out to FSW and IDUs with information about Hepatitis C. A system of numbering using pictogram roman numerals made out of needles for the IDUs and manicure equipment for the FSW was developed.
Aids Alliance wanted to advertise Hepatitis C billboards all across Ukraine. Fellows Norskov used typography instead of photos due to his concerns of the quality of the resolution. An ad designed which was not used inside the subway car was modified and created to fit the billboard’s size of 6 meters by 3 meters.
For Hepatitis C Day, Aids Alliance wanted the volunteers to have T-Shirts to wear when speaking to the crowd and handing out advocacy materials. Fellows Norskov's own goal was to create a shirt that not only communicated a message about Hepatitis C, but was also cool enough for the person to wear it again. Because many people knew little about the effects of Hepatitis C, Fellows Norskov showed what Hepatitis C actually did on the shirts themselves. The logo was manipulated into a large blood-smear over the approximate place the person wearing the shirt’s liver would be. This would have an implicit message to individuals who would be interacting with the volunteers of how Hepatitis C affects you without even speaking with them.
Needle Exchange Program Prezi
Near the end of Fellow Norskov's stay in Ukraine, he was approached to re-design presentation slides that staff member Andrey Klepikov was giving to NGO workers in Ukraine for a conference about IDUs and AIDs. The original slides lacked style and was used to educate NGOS on the harassment that various methadone clinics and doctors experienced from secret service and police of Ukraine. Staff Andrey Klepikov's slides were mostly a timeline of the type of harassment and the influence that the different departments of the Ukrainian government put on NGOs and IDUs. Parsons Fellows Norskov took the opportunity to create presentation slides that showed the flow of influence from different agents in the web of Ukrainian politics all the way down to the doctors and patients that their policies have the greatest effect on. Prezi presentation software was used since it does best with dealing with small parts of a much larger image in a customized order. The Prezi was reportedly a big success, with many people asking how it was made, giving staff member Andrey Klepikov compliments on the presentation, and laughing at the bomber hat on the Russian.
Aids Alliance Ukraine’s website was designed when the company started over a decade ago. While the website in its infancy and heyday was not bad, the exponential annual growth of the company was not mirrored in the technology. Even having their own hosting server with a dedicated staff of IT professionals, there was little time to update the website with new material, much less design updates. Fellows Norskov's time, when not doing graphic design for the various posters or billboards, was spent doing website deisgn comps. Aids Alliance decided to outsource the development of the badly-needed content management system to an outside company and the rest of the backend to an external company. The IT staff, with new head Zavarin Alexander, will oversee the development and implementation of the new website following the website comps Fellows Norskov did in Illustrator. Additionally, Norskov will help guide the implementation of the new system for finding publications as well.
Malaysian Lighter Design
A side project Fellow Norskov was asked to create was the graphic design on lighters for volunteers in Malaysia. When the AIDs volunteers in Malaysia go on house calls or however they interact with their constituents, they are not able to engage on a meaningful level. The lighters were given because it would be an item that could be easily carried and used. The word “TALK!” in Malaysian was printed on one side and the other displayed the five steps volunteers needed to take in order to sucessfully communicate with their constituents.
International HIV/AIDS Alliance (IHAA)
The International HIV/AIDS Alliance (the Alliance) is a global partnership of 38 nationally-based linking organisations, seven Regional Technical Support Hubs and an international secretariat, working to support community action on AIDS in developing countries.
Ben Norskov (Parsons MFA DT 2012) is an interactive and game designer currently exploring dynamic and emergent narrative systems. He grew up in Fayetteville, Tennessee where he mostly just ran around in the woods. He has lived in Boulder, Colorado and Chattanooga, Tennessee where he did his undergraduate degree. Previous to coming to Parsons, Ben studied bassoon, worked as a gaffer on film sets, and designed a lot of websites. Much of his recent work has attempted to deal with our limitation of perceptions of complex systems by reducing those systems to a comprehensible game system. Ben is now based in Brooklyn where if he isn't programming or designing his latest project, he can probably be found on the Ultimate Frisbee Field.