What if the Front Cover of American Lifestyle magazine was drawn by children? That question was what initially sparked the idea for The Children's Edition of American Lifestyle magazine. From there, our early discussions took us on a journey back to our childhoods, sharing stories and memories, while brainstorming ideas for how we could show the magazine through the eyes of a child.
As the Art Director and Project Manager, this opportunity gave me experience pulling off successful events and coordinating large scale design initiatives with a large group of volunteers and under tight deadlines. More importantly, it allowed me to use my creativity, skills, and resources to make a positive impact on the lives of children. WinterSummerland remains as a constant reminder how design can impact others and why I love I do. It was truly an experience I will never forget.
The heart of this idea centered around seeing the magazine’s cover through the eyes of a child. The hard work and imagination that followed lead to an inspiring event called WinterSummerland and the second special edition of American Lifestyle magazine, The Children’s Edition.
We were fortunate enough to form a partnership with the number one children’s hospital in America, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and they shared our excitement about the project. On our first meeting, we were in awe of the magic that surrounded every corner. A quote discovered on one mural in particular caught our attention: “A child’s mind is always open, exploring world’s anew.” After that initial walk-through, we knew that every detail of this special edition needed to be a reflection of this imaginative and impactful environment.
We decided that this special edition should deliver around the holidays, and knew that we wanted the result to benefit children in some way. Because each issue of the magazine was prepped 6 months in advance of delivery, that would mean we'd need to have holiday drawings for the magazine by summer's close.
Challenge 1: How can we inspire children to draw winter and holiday scenes in the middle of the summer? This challenge reminded me of a Christmas in July party I attended as a teenager and how the off-season nature didn't hinder us from getting into the Christmas spirit.
We collaborated with the ChildLife team and eventually decided on a ReminderMedia-hosted event called WinterSummerland. The goal of the event was to gather drawings for the front cover and to bring a few fun activities to children who may have missed out on the fun and excitement of the winter season.
A group of 12 employees from multiple departments made up what we eventually called 'Team CHOP.' We spent many late nights and weekends imagining and crafting every last detail of WinterSummerland. It was an absolute honor to lead such a giving and creative group. After months of planning and preparation, our internal team of dedicated employees from ReminderMedia transformed the Colket Atrium at CHOP into a WinterSummerland on July 8, 2014.
We built six different stations for patients and their families to enjoy. Those stations included sand art, a gingerbread house decoration station, a collaborative craft called Project Snowflake, and the 'Design Your Own Magazine Cover' contest. There was also an Imagination Station photo booth, with a special photo magnet event favor, and an area to play Snowman Cornhole.
Team CHOP assembled 150 To-Go Activity boxes so that patients who were unable to leave their rooms could still enjoy the WinterSummerland festivities.
The children who attended WinterSummerland presented us with beautiful drawings, 1000s of smiles, and many thank you’s—but the greatest gift they gave us was their presence and inspiration.
A compilation of the delivery and promotions surrounding WinterSummerland and The Children's Edition.