Frost* covered Sydney in condoms, with a campaign created for the AIDS Council of NSW (ACON). The 'I'M ON' campaign was one of three components of ACON's Ending HIV education initiative (which also included Test More and Treat Early phases) and was aimed to create a dialogue with gay men that would reinforce condom use as a key factor for ending the HIV epidemic.
ACON, NSW's and Australia's largest community-based gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) health and HIV organisation, wanted to build on the success of Ending HIV phase one, by engaging with gay men about condoms. In addition to testing more and treating early, condom use is a vital aspect of a broader project that aims to end new transmission of HIV in Australia by 2020. 30 years into the epidemic, condom reinforcement messages have generated ‘HIV fatigue’ amongst the target audience. This was the time to reposition condoms, not only as the best way of protecting yourself and your partners, but as importantly, to serve the bigger cause of ending the epidemic by 2020.
Our response was to create an outdoor campaign that would saturate inner Sydney and use humour to make the topic of condoms fun and engaging. The bold, black and white, typographic aesthetic of the earlier Ending HIV campaign was retained for the Stay Safe work. For this initiative, it evolved with the addition of illustrative condoms slipped over some of the letterforms of amusing headlines, with the condoms becoming part of the campaign’s visual language.
In a continuation of the messages communicated in the Ending HIV campaign, the Stay Safe work aimed not only to encourage gay men to use condoms to protect themselves and their partners, but to put condom use front and centre of their personal contribution to ending HIV by the end of the decade.