[This is a guest post by Jeff Tyser* and Kerryn-lee Maggs*, telling us about the trip infographics they created]
My girlfriend and I both work in the advertising industry in Johannesburg, South Africa. Kerryn is a freelance art director and designer, and I am a freelance copywriter. In April last year, we said goodbye to all of that, packed as much gear as we could into our Landrover and set off on a big adventure around Southern Africa. 5 months and 22 500 kms later, we returned home with the best suntans of our lives, lots of new friends, one very scruffy beard and a lifetime’s supply of amazing memories. After living like gypsies for so long, it was quite a challenge getting used to city living again. But after 6 months with no income, it was also quite nice to be able to put some money back into our empty bank accounts!
We both love our photography (although we are complete amateurs) and we took thousands of photos along the way. We’ll frame some of our best ones, of course, but we wanted to make something else to keep as a reminder of the trip. Kerryn had the idea to do an infographic poster for each country we traveled through. Neither of us has done much infographic work before, but it seemed like the perfect way to capture such a wide range of stories, statistics and memories all in one place. We liked the idea of combining information design with a photo that really summed-up the feeling each country gave us. We were actually pretty lucky to find 6 suitable shots, considering we only had the idea once we got home.
As professional creatives, we often get a bit frustrated about how much control there is over the creative process. One of the most rewarding things about working on these posters was the fact that we could do whatever we wanted. There was no creative director telling us it was a shit idea, no planner telling us it was off strategy, and no client changing his mind every day. There’s even a spelling mistake in there – a little personal joke. It was also quite a nostalgic process sitting back with a glass of wine every evening and thinking about what stories to use.
Jeff Tyser is a freelance advertising copywriter working out of Johannesburg, South Africa. His first 5 years in the ad industry were spent at South Africa’s Agency of the Decade (2000 – 2010), The Jupiter Drawing Room. There he gained valuable experience working on a range of local and international brands, winning a bunch of awards along the way. He then moved on to Net#work BBDO, where he spent 2 years working on more high-profile South African and international brands, working closely with some of the country’s most respected creatives. At the end of 2012, he left full-time agency life to become a freelancer. Catch him on Twitter (@Jeff_Tyser) or at thelostandfoundblog.tumblr.com
Kerryn-lee Maggs is a freelance art director and designer working out of Johannesburg, South Africa. She began her career in 2007 at the then recently-founded Hello World. A few years later, the agency had grown to become one of the most respected creative hotshops in South Africa. After 5 years at Hello World, and with several high profile and highly-awarded campaigns under her belt, Kerryn left the agency to become a freelancer. Follow her on Twitter (@KERRING_LEE) or at thelostandfoundblog.tumblr.com