Pantone creates the world's most unignorable colour

What do you do if you want to really draw attention to a campaign? If you're United Way – a Canadian network of non-profits that work locally to raise funds and improve lives in their communities – you rope in Pantone to use a bit of colour theory and create a new hue that can't be ignored.

For its new campaign, Show Your Local Love, United Way wanted to make local issues – such as poverty, homelessness, domestic violence, mental health and social isolation – unignorable. So it partnered up with the Pantone Color Institute to develop a unique Pantone shade aimed at highlighting these issues in a way that's hard to overlook.

The result is Unignorable, a colour that's guaranteed to grab your attention. It's described by Laurie Pressman, VP at the Pantone Color Institue, as an instantly captivating, brightly coloured hue that radiates pure heat and energy. "The Unignorable colour boldly calls out for attention while remaining friendly, approachable and optimistic," she says.

United Way has a long-standing association with good design. Its logo, depicting a helping hand cradling mankind and surrounded by a rainbow symbolising hope, was created in 1972 by Saul Bass. And to help get the message of its new campaign across, United Way has brought in another design icon, Malika Favre, to create a series of eye-catching images that use Unignorable to illustrate the issues the organisation is attempting to tackle.

"The idea behind the campaign was to grab people’s attention with a unique and bold colour," says Favre, "combined with a hidden narrative that highlights everyday issues. Our colour is here to make them look and our story to make them think."

Pantone Unignorable - Malika Favre

Malika Favre's minimal illustrations use Unignorable to grab people's attention

United Way is also working with Canadian brand Peace Collective to create a series of Unignorable items that you can buy through its store, starting with a signature T-shirt and with more pieces to follow.

To find out more about United Way, Show Your Local Love and of course the new Pantone Unignorable colour, head this way.

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Jim McCauley

Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.