Joyful fundraising

Ok, all you development people out there, here’s one to think about when you just can’t fathom picking up the phone to make one more “Help our cause” call. Own A Colour is a campaign to raise money for Unicef by naming colors in exchange for a donation. The donation for a color starts at 1£, but with 16.7 million colors available (the number that can be displayed by a contemporary computer screen) you can see how this could really add up.

Not only is the interface captivating, drawing on a tessellation motif that calls to mind the fragmented view through a kaleidoscope, but also I find the storytelling to be extremely well done. Using a mix of ordinary people and celebrities, the tiles are explained as they are named and claimed. Reading the stories, I’m reminded of this project, which also explores the interplay of color and memory, of the personal significance of a hue.

And while I know infographics are all the rage, and some of us may be getting a bit sick of them, I like this snapshot (below) as a way of navigating the color landscape. There’s something wonderful about seeing the different arrays of trending colors and random colors, and the color choices of different nationalities.

I’ve been talking a lot about generosity lately, about the idea that many things we find joyful are generous in some way, and I find this a great example because even though they’re asking for money, it still feels generous. I feel like I’m being given a world of color to explore and participate in. It makes me want to give. So let me get on that, and I hope you will too. Share a link to the colors you choose in the comments, or on Twitter!

Hey, Guess What?

The Aesthetics of Joy is now a book! Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness is now available.

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