As creative professionals, we're always looking out for ground-breaking work to be inspired by. This is why we're big fans of The Indigo Design Award, a global contest that rewards exceptional talent in a range of creative fields.
So in a special series of articles, we're taking an in-depth look at some of the best work from this year's 2021 winners. They range from fun and commercial to personal and impactful. And a great example of the latter is Never A Victim's Fault, a project which won Tiffany Gouw of Raffles Design Institute the award for Discovery of the Year.
In many parts of the world, including Indonesia, victims of rape are uniquely vulnerable for being blamed for their assault, compared with victims of other interpersonal crimes. Never A Victim's Fault aims to provide a better understanding of why this situation is occurring and the importance of changing the culture of victim-blaming.
The project also aims to guide the women on how to deal with this issue in the future; to remind people that it's never a victim's fault; to encourage those who've experienced sexual violence to speak up; and to let them know that they're not without help and support.
Never A Victim's Fault was created by Tiffany Gouw while she was studying at Raffles Design Institute, Singapore. She's now working in Jakarta, Indonesia as a freelance illustrator at media and news company Context. "I design and create illustrations for the video purposes that cover modern explorations in business and society," she says.
Describing her illustration style as "contemporary yet humanistic", she says that visual research is a big part of her creative approach.
"Whenever I have free time, I will explore designs of various genres and styles to get inspiration," Tiffany explains. "Through sketching, I'll visualise my inspirations and keep it in my idea vault. I also like reading, especially hot topics related to what's going on in the world, from social issues to environmental documentaries."
Tiffany's project focuses on the victim-blaming culture that dominates Indonesia, especially when it comes to sexual assault.
"People tend to blame victims for wearing improper clothes and think that they're overreacting as well," she says. "This leads victims to stay silent: they don't dare to share their stories, knowing that they will be blamed. Unfortunately, this can lead them to have suicidal thoughts and mental health problems."
By making a book of illustrations that shows what victims are going through, Tiffany aims to educate people to become more aware of victim-blaming and to support the victims.
"I also want to educate the victims when they are dealing with this problem," she adds, "to remind them this is never their fault and that they have the right to speak up."
It wasn't an easy topic to approach. "The nature of the topic is quite controversial, especially in Indonesia, so I had a hard time during the research stage of the project," Tiffany recalls.
Deciding the tone and manner of the overall work was another challenge on top of that. "I wanted it to be approachable and easy to understand, while abstract enough to express the emotional aspect of the topic," she explains.
But the work paid off, and she's thrilled that the project has been recognised. "Winning the Indigo Award has definitely been a boost to my career development, especially for a fresh grad," she says. "It's given me new confidence and, most importantly, motivated me to push the envelope of creativity further."
Enter the Indigo Design Award 2022!
Fancy entering for next year? Then you'll be pleased to know the Indigo Award 2022 is now open for submission. You need to enter your work by 30 September 2021 and can find all the details you need at indigoawards.com.