Print ads use clever illusion to save the penguins

A species in rapid decline, the African penguin needs help. South African advertising agency Bittersuite (opens in new tab) and SANCOOB (opens in new tab), a non-profit organisation that aims to protect threatened seabirds, recently developed this innovative series of print ads (opens in new tab) to raise awareness of the penguin's critical situation.

Inspired by the artwork of Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher (opens in new tab), two of the designs feature clever optical illusions to draw the viewer in for a closer look and get their message across. The third draws inspiration from optometrists’ eye charts, featuring a timeline of different sized penguins to show the decline in the species.

We really like the concept behind this campaign and think the idea has been expertly executed. The bold, beautiful, black and white illustrations are mesmorising and totally left us wanting more information on the message behind them. We particularly like the 'See the reality before it’s too late' poster, which, using small penguin head graphics, reveals the ratio of live vs. dead penguins. Very clever.

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