The design process behind the National Plan

Our Work News Reflections

Written by Scarlett Musu in consultation with Catrin Harris / 15.11.2022

Last month, the Australian government unveiled the National Plan to End Violence Against Women and Children 2022-2032. This was the culmination of many months of work, and contributions by hundreds of victim-survivors, advocates, activists, practitioners, researchers, service providers and more.

Written by Scarlett Musu in consultation with Catrin Harris / 15.11.2022

A watercolour painting-style photograph of a Black mum and her Middle Eastern partner and their mixed race children. They are all laughing and playing happily, whilst the two mums hug. Around the image are some splashes of blue that look like a watercolour painting.

The ambitious ten-year National Action Plan (NAP) aims to end gender-based violence in one generation.

We are proud to have delivered the design, illustrations, and infographics of the NAP, with artwork contributions from Carmen Glynn-Braun. We spoke to our Visual Designer Catrin about the design choices behind the NAP.

Humanised imagery

The National Action Plan is all about people, yet human-centred imagery has been avoided in previous NAPs - until now. Using imagery of real people is imperative to tell a visual narrative and illustrate that gender-based violence affects each of us in different ways. The diversity of Australian people is represented in imagery, which reflects the intersectional approach that the government is taking to end violence.

Images have been styled with a soft, painted look and we use brush strokes to reveal different parts of the image. The choice to blend photography and watercolour reveals the interconnectedness of humanity and nature.

Overarching theme of nature

We used a visual language inspired by nature to create a grounded experience. Water is a running theme across both content and design. Organic shapes, watercolour marks, and soft blues mimic water and create a sense of movement and momentum throughout the document.

Colour theory

Blue is the primary colour used throughout the National Action Plan. Blue inspires feelings of calm and honesty and reflect the motif of water and nature. It’s associated with open spaces, imagination, freedom, and inspiration. Blue can represent depth, trust, intelligence, sensitivity, and sincerity.


Lora is the typeface used in headings, chosen for its readability and calligraphic roots. It’s a serif font which lends itself well to the theme of nature whilst feeling handmade and contemporary.

Nunito is the typeface used in the body copy of the document. It’s a rounded sans-serif typeface which is easy to read and uncomplicated.


We prioritised accessibility in the National Plan by adhering to the VIC Gov's accessibility guidelines. This includes things like:

  • Avoiding jargon and using language that is concise and easy to read
  • Keeping font sizes above a certain size for easy legibility
  • Using a high contrast ratio for all designs, especially for text on backgrounds
  • Providing alt-text that offers image descriptions for all imagery
  • Providing a digital pdf that is accessible for people with screen readers