Live Well Springfield

Issue Live Well Springfield is a new movement in the capital city of Western Massachusetts that encourages people for whom optimum health has not been accessible to make small but significant changes to get healthier. In partnership with 6 Point Creative Works, Verdant mapped out a strategy to inspire people to  exercise and eat healthier, and created a multi-media, multi-cultural campaign.

Goal Verdant asked almost 50 residents in several focus groups about their lives, their options and dreams. From their answers, one of the recurring common themes was that people want to see real people and not models, or stock photography.

Result The media campaign features over a dozen Springfield residents sharing their steps in photos, videos and audio. Changes include taking the stairs vs the elevator, buying fresh food instead of canned vegetables. Most of the photos for the posters were taken by Denise Stewart.  Verdant also brought in another powerful photographer, Shana Sureck, for the campaign. Below are some of the posters. Shana photographed Moyah Smith taking the stairs while Denise took the other photographs.


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Stephen Holden on Love

This poster designed itself for me. I had already made the bamboo etchings and had set them aside, waiting for an opportunity to build a design with it.

Few movie reviewers are extraordinary. Most tell you what they liked or did not like about a movie. Stephen Holden is among the few critics who writes a compelling short story when he reviews movies. His take of “Brokeback Mountain” consoled me after seeing this tragic story of a doomed love. A line in the review reminded me of the strength of bamboo trees, which, ultimately, give way to the passage of time and the battering of nature but survive nonetheless for years to come.

Alice Walker


alice walker standI made this poster because so much of Alice Walker’s writing is profound and sometimes seemingly impenetrable at first. But give her statements a moment, and its simple and powerful message becomes clear.

Madamas: Women, Madonnas and Mothers

For this exhibit, an evocative painting that was part of it made the most sense to feature on the poster.

“Meet the Madama, in her multiple manifestations. “Madamas: Women, Madonnas, and Mothers” looks at images of Black women in Caribbean art, as shown in paintings, batiks, dolls and photographs.”

Read more about this exhibit curated by Waleska Santiago at Repeating Islands magazine.


Mary Patierno and I produced “Vieques: Worth Every Bit of Struggle,” a documentary that spotlights a group of people who were the David to the U.S. military’s Goliath.

Vieques is a tiny island a couple miles to the east of Puerto Rico. For decades, the U.S. military owned two-thirds of the island, using one-third of it for target practice. Everything from machine guns to bombs shot from jets and ships pummeled the island just a few miles from where civilians lives.

Viequenses were scared that an errant missile would kill civilians – and that did happen. They also became sick with cancer at a higher rate than residents of the mainland Puerto Rico, because of the heavy metals from exploded bombs poisoning the agricultural fields and waters.

There is so much to this story that for the poster, I chose the image that best captured the grassroots movement, adding a often repeated chant as a sub headline (Yes to Vieques, No to the Military.)



Project Safe Baby

Issue Accidental asphyxiation of babies generally occurs when they are placed in a crib with blankets and toys with which they can become entangles. The tragedy is especially high in the black and Latino communities.

Goal Raise awareness about how to care for babies when they sleep – Always face up, in a onesey pajama and without anything in the crib (no toys, no blankets.)

Result Verdant produced two short videos for Project Baby Springfield to share on its social media page. We also brought in the masterful graphic designer Lisa Carta to design two posters, with photographs taken by the great photographer Denise Stewart, in English and in Spanish, to be displayed on the outside and inside of PVTA buses in Springfield.




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