COME JOIN US ON A NIGHT UNDER THE STARS!
For the second year in a row, I was chosen to design the branding and identity for Member's Appreciation Night 2019. This time, I went from being a Promotions Coordinator, to now the Design Lead. In addition to the usual responsibilities that I had fulfilled in MAN 2018, I wanted to take a step above to ensure that any existing and new tasks I had the pleasure of taking on would top off MAN 2019, compared to previous years, and I also wanted to make sure the work I did could even set an example for the planning of future MAN events.
The two MAN Directors, Julia Baik and Samantha Chee, were very meticulous about planning MAN 2019, as it was both their second year in university and in CAC, and had no prior experience planning a large-scale event before. As I already had experience with helping out with MAN 2018, I was the person they could trust on when it came to things relating to design, or even anything that fell under the creative sphere. As the chosen theme was A Night Under The Stars, a very common theme for extravagant and lavish events, that actually motivated me to set the bar higher when it came to designing and creating the collateral for MAN 2019.
THE USUAL DESIGN ASSETS...
Facebook event cover banner for MAN 2019.
Promotional video, produced and edited by Jason Chung, a fellow CAC 2018-2019 executive member in the Communications Department.
As usual, a Snapchat geofilter was created for MAN 2019. As the venue for the event was booked at a smaller space, tickets and seating were limited, hence why the metrics and data were lower, compared to MAN 2018.
... AND THE NEW DESIGN ASSETS I CHOSE TO TACKLE ON
Alternative promotional video done in Adobe After Effects CC. The purpose of this video was to play around with my existing skillset in basic animation and motion editing, while applying it with typography, a creative medium.
A promotional website, man2019.caconline.ca, was created in preparation for MAN 2019. Just like the Snapchat geofilter that was created for MAN 2019, this was the first time that CAC hosted a website for one of their events in general.
KEEPING IT ALL DIGITAL
When one usually gets invited to a fancy event, print invitations are the way to RSVP. But as undergraduate students attending one of the most sustainable universities in all of Canada, we decided to decrease waste consumption that would involve printing such materials out, in order to keep up with the reputation that we are proud to have at SFU. Even something so small and simple such as printing invitations would be hindering and cost-inefficient. Not to mention, planning for MAN 2019 started after the Reading Break around the last week of February 2019, and even if we wanted to make any sort of print invitations, those were already out of the question.
From there, everything ranging from RSVP invitations, event reminders, and mobile tickets were all sent digitally, using MailChimp.
E-invitations that were sent to CAC executive members, general members, and anyone who was subscribed to our mailing list.
E-tickets that were sent on the day of the event, along with a few reminders that attendees should keep in mind prior to heading to the venue.
WHAT DID I LEARN?
1) Working under time constraints and under pressure.
I worked for MAN 2018 for a total of three months. For MAN 2019, it cut close to about a month. The directors, Julia and Sam, needed to find someone who was committed to their craft and knew how to execute a solution from the bottom-up. Due to the reveling amount of success and amazing feedback that I had received after MAN 2018 from the previous directors, it became clear that I was the only person I was trusted on to help turn one of CAC's most anticipated events of the year into yet, another event that would be talked and reminisced about during finals season.
2) The sky isn't the limit (literally).
What makes this experience different compared to the other design projects I've worked on for different clubs and organizations at SFU was that I was given complete freedom to carry out the overall aesthetic for MAN 2019. I was free to use whatever colours, typefaces, and other visual communication tools I thought would look suitable for the theme, A Night Under The Stars. And as I mentioned above, this particular theme tends to be a clichéd and played out theme that tends to look visually unappealing. Throughout the course of one month, I explored the various design assets I knew I wanted to create, and planned out how to deliver it in such a manner that would set a precedent for next year's MAN, or even future MANs in the years to come.
3) Being a jack of all trades.
This is more of a reflection, but over four weeks, I had to look up countless tutorials on Youtube on how to do X or Y on After Effects, or get myself familiarized with MailChimp, for instance. I even learned a few tricks on Illustrator that I didn't even know about prior to starting this project! (Darn you layers...) I have always wanted to experiment with designing different collateral that I normally do not work on, such as animation, or web design. After this event, I wish to expand my design skillset to more than just purely graphic design. For example, after finals season, I completed a Social Media certification on Hubspot, and even though the closest thing I did relating to social media was sending out MailChimp emails, it would have been neat to develop even a basic social media plan leading up to Member's Appreciation Night.