This is to help out my amazing friend, Emma. She's not just one of the funniest, kindest, most badass humans you can hope to meet, and an incredible mum to two fantastic kids. She also has MS.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a condition that can affect the brain and spinal cord, causing a wide range of potential symptoms, including problems with vision, arm or leg movement, sensation or balance. It's a lifelong condition that can sometimes cause serious disability.
She's been living and fighting with this condition since she was first diagnosed, after temporarily losing her sight, over a decade ago. Her strength and determination goes beyond anything I can comprehend. And even after hurting, struggling and suffering for all this time, her spirit remains as bright as ever.
She experiences relapses that make even the most basic tasks — that we all take for granted — almost impossible for her. Although there's currently no cure, and Emma acknowledges she'll likely never get better, there is a treatment that has been proven to halt the disease progression. However, she's unlikely to get it in this country and it's extremely expensive.
When Emma launched her GoFundMe I instantly donated. When payday next came around I donated again without a second thought, and decided I would do this every payday until her target was reached.
I started to work on this campaign idea to provide her with some images and videos in the hope it might help her keep the message fresh and engaging, as raising £40,000 is unlikely to happen overnight. That way she could supply her friends and family with simple ways to spread the word as they could post them to their social media profiles in an attempt to direct more people to the page.
As I was playing around with blended overlapping type it reminded me of risograph printing. I wondered if, instead of just donating again, I could order a pile of prints instead, post them online and and ask people to donations towards Emma's treatment in exchange for some prints. This could multiply the money I was donating whilst involving more people and ultimately spreading the message that little bit further.
I chose to rework a poster I had designed a number of years ago for Poster Project, as Emma actually has a copy of it hanging up in her home (so it felt like an obvious choice). I sent it off to Risotto Studio in Glasgow to do their thing and quickly set up a Big Cartel.
As part of the original campaign idea, I asked Emma to record some voiceover segments, covering the main aspects of her fundraiser, to overlay them on some motion graphics, featuring stills and videos. I edited together a few short videos and shared them around for others to post. The fundraiser had over £10k still to reach, and she was scheduled to fly in less than a few months time.
The campaign name, MS Taco, is to bring a little bit of fun to the whole thing as the treatment is in Mexico and it's all very scary. But tacos aren't scary, they're the opposite. And they come from Mexico, so are sort of relevant. They also make everything better, tacos do, so this is kind of Emma's taco. An MS Taco, if you will. We could even call her Ms Taco! No. We won't do that. I just love tacos. Mmmmm tacos.
Thanks so much to everyone who donated to this cause. With your help I was able to add an addiitonal £1,400 to her fundraiser.
If there's any still available, you can maybe get yourself an MS Taco print (all proceeds will still go to Emma's GoFundMe). They are A5 risographs on 300gsm Context Natural (off-white with a smooth clean surface, made entirely from post consumer waste). Two-colour prints of teal and fluro pink printed by Risotto Studio in Glasgow.