Finding Mike

Finding Mike

On 14 January 2008 Jonny Benjamin went to Waterloo Bridge in London to take his own life. He had been diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder could see no hope for the future. A passerby who was walking over the bridge stopped to help Jonny and managed to talk him down. Jonny was taken to hospital by the police, and never saw the kind stranger again, nor had the chance to thank him.

Six years later, the ‘Finding Mike’ campaign was launched in an effort to find this good Samaritan. The campaign went viral globally, with #findmike trending on Twitter in the UK, Australia and South Africa. Jonny went on to make a documentary about his search for ‘Mike’, in conjunction with the charity Rethink Mental Illness.

I was challenged to create the branding for the documentary launch at the BFI in London. The items designed included pull-up banners, posters, and an information booklet that included a mini pull-out booklet of poetry written by Jonny. The branding needed to be sombre and tasteful, and to reflect the visual qualities of the documentary itself. I directed the photography to be wistful and have an isolated quality, to reflect the magnitude of locating a single individual in a city like London. In post-production I enhanced the browns and greys to reflect the look and feel of the documentary. I also used a blurred effect to represent Jonny’s sense of isolation, and the hazy nature of the human memory. The identity used a clean and simple sans serif. The horizontal cut through the centre alluded to the coming together of Jonny and ‘Mike’, while adding a sense of movement to the identity.

 

Image of 'Finding Mike' promotional material, designed by graphic designer and branding designer Jessica Croome of Perth WA