In 2017, Nic D’Avirro approached Matt Braaten, his good friend and fellow actor, with an idea for a play about the American playwright Sam Shepard. Nic was an actor first and foremost, whereas Matt had previously written plays and scripts. It was a fruitful partnership and it developed into a close collaboration, as each of them brought their creativity to the table. At first, there was just an idea about Sam Shepard on his last night alive, but Nic clearly knew the tone of the piece yet to be written. Energized by the concept, the two began sharing ideas, checking out books, buying plays and learning as much about the reclusive Shepard as they could. Nic and Matt read Shepard’s plays, books and biographies, discovered old interviews online and researched anything they could find on him. Slowly the structure of the play began to take shape.
Over the course of several years, they wrote the play together, now titled Unseen Shepard, and made plans to take it to the 2020 Edinburgh (Scotland) Festival Fringe, the biggest theatre festival of its kind in the world. But when Covid struck, the Festival was cancelled. Undeterred, Nic and Matt regrouped and began planning to take the show to the 2021 Festival. However, Nic died unexpectedly on January 12, 2021.
After taking time to mourn the loss of their dear friend, father, husband and collaborator, Matt and Nic’s family have decided to follow through on the plan and bring the play to the 2022 Edinburgh Festival Fringe where it has been invited to premiere. But they need some help getting there. Please read the details in the link and support the project if you are in a position to do so. Thank you.
BLT Helps designed the window card for the production.
BLT Helps created charity posters for Aziz Ansari to sell at two of his live shows. The money went to local charities in the cities where the concerts were held: The Food Bank for New York City and The Chicago Coalition for the Homeless.
Food Bank For New York City has been working to end food poverty in New York City’s five boroughs for over 36 years. As the city’s largest hunger-relief organization, they employ a multifaceted approach centered on helping low-income New Yorkers overcome their circumstances and achieve greater independence. Visit their website for community resources or to find out how you can donate, become a volunteer, or use your voice for community action.
Chicago Coalition for the Homeless believes that housing is a human right in a just society. Since 1980, they’ve made it their mission to organize and advocate to prevent and end homelessness. There are several ways to donate, support, advocate, and sponsor the Chicago Coalition on their website and they offer many programs, scholarships, special events, and more to help those in need within the community.
When diagnosed with terminal cancer, a world-renowned trumpet player uses music to give hope, proving art is essential to survival. BLT Helps designed the poster for the film Song for Hope.
Song for Hope follows the remarkable story of Ryan Anthony, a renowned trumpet virtuoso who, when diagnosed with terminal cancer, started a charity called “CancerBlows” and raised millions for cancer research by putting on huge concerts with some of the biggest instrumental music stars in the world. During his treatment, he also climbed Mt. Fuji with his oncologist and played his trumpet at the summit.
This is a story about hope, about living life to the fullest, about the unwavering strength and support of family and friends, and about one man’s refusal to allow his affliction to affect his love of his art. Prepare to be inspired.
The Mind Elevation Project promotes mindfulness, yoga, and leadership skills to inner-city youth as positive additions to their daily routine. With practice, students become invested in bettering themselves and those around them. Participants learn leadership through community service and building relationships with peers, instilling the idea that by helping others we actually help ourselves.
Since its inception, the Mind Elevation Project has introduced more than 12,000 children and 500 teachers in the LAUSD to yoga and meditation practices. Their program has been facilitated at Van Nuys High School, The Albert Einstein Odyssey Academy, Wise School, Dr. Julian Nava Learning Academy, EduCare Foundation, Skillify, YouthBuild, LAUSD Beyond The Bell, LAUSD Spotlight on Success, and the DPSCD.
BLT Helps designed their logo and a T-shirt for Mind Elevation’s launch. You can see an example of the shirt worn by founder Arjuna O’Neal.
Share Necessities founder Arjuna O’Neal is currently working to raise funding for the full development of his latest endeavor, the Lotus Institute, an online version of Share Necessities’ tools, resources and practices. BLT Helps designed their logo.
The Lotus Institute will provide an online commUNITY that appeals to any background, ethnicity, gender and age, with a primary target audience of youth and families in marginalized communities. Their hope is that this will bridge gaps and remove the stereotypes and labels of underserved or less fortunate, and create an online commUNITY where all feel seen, heard, welcomed, and safe regardless of their story.
MaryEllenMark.com is the official site and web archive for one of the world’s most respected and influential photographers. Her images of our world’s diverse cultures have become landmarks in the field of documentary photography. BLT Helps refreshed the design, developed a content management system, and built a new front end website to showcase her decades of work. Much focus was placed on ensuring the design worked on mobile devices. A fluid aspect ratio adapts the site to ensure that new form factors will also render the site and her work beautifully for years to come.
BLT Helps provided title design for Mary Ellen Mark and Martin Bell’s Streetwise Revisited: Rat. After TINY: The Life of Erin Blackwell was completed, Martin Bell spoke with Rat, whose spectacular jump from the Rainbow Bridge opens the Streetwise film, about appearing in this short film.
NY PopsUp is a festival that serves as a pilot program for creating the New York’s first large-scale model for how to bring live performance back safely after a prolonged COVID-related shutdown. The series of live events is intended to revitalize the spirit and emotional well-being of New York citizens with the energy of live performance, while jumpstarting New York’s struggling live entertainment sector. BLT created the logo, campaign branding, social media campaign materials, and website for the initiative. www.nypopsup.com
Share Necessities is a non-profit organization that serves inner city youth through meditation, yoga, and leadership training. Whether delivering health kits to neighbors in need or school supplies to low-income students, Share Necessities strives to help people form a greater connection to their communities.
BLT Helps designed signage for Share Necessities’ first inner-city CommUNITY Wellness Center in South Los Angeles, which opened its doors on Saturday, November 4, 2016. We also created additional signage to promote their youth and adult services which support a healthy mind-body connection through yoga, mixed martial arts, and mindfulness training. Many thanks to Continental Colorcraft for donating their services to print and install the signs on Giving Tuesday! We designed charity ads for Share Necessities that you may recognize from the 2016 and 2017 Clio Entertainment Awards catalogs. In 2020, we assisted with a redesign as the CommUNITY Center is now being operated by local leaders who are residents of the community and have developed their own nonprofit through the guidance of Share Necessities.
For more information on Share Necessities and what they do, please check out their website.
Witnessing the atrocity of the September 11 attacks and having spent time assisting the rescue workers on Ground Zero, Kim Solomon was motivated to start Humanitarian Affairs Asia to bring more good into the world.
With over a decade of experience, Humanitarian Affairs Asia is a nonprofit organization based in Thailand, founded with a mission to instill a sense of social consciousness and empower the leaders of tomorrow. They hold seminars, programs, and internships to engage and inspire young people from across the globe to serve communities in need.
BLT Helps assisted Humanitarian Affairs Asia with movie poster inspired advertisements for their upcoming programs.
The Downtown Women’s Center (DWC) is the only organization in Los Angeles focused exclusively on serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly homeless women.
Built on a friendship that grew between two women – Rosa, who was struggling with homelessness, and an outreach worker named Jill – the Downtown Women’s Center is a testament to the power of women coming together to support their community. For over 40 years, the DWC has empowered thousands of women through housing, wellness, employment, and advocacy, welcoming each with dignity and respect.
Homelessness is not inevitable, but a societal problem that bears especially hard on women. Learn how you can be part of the solution at downtownwomenscenter.org
Food on Foot is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing the poor and homeless of Los Angeles with nutritious meals, clothing, and assistance in the transition to employment and life off the streets.
Through the passion and steadfast dedication of Jay Goldinger, what initially began as the distribution of meals from the trunk of one man’s car, now serves more than 500 meals each Sunday to homeless, disabled, elderly, and low-income adults and children. Jay hasn’t missed a Sunday in over 20 years! In addition to free weekly meals, the Work for Food program assists homeless individuals with the tools and resources needed to leave the streets of Los Angeles with a life-skills education, a full-time job, housing they can afford, and the confidence needed to make their accomplishments long lasting.
Over the years, BLT Helps has had the honor of sponsoring many servings at Food on Foot, volunteering with groups of staff and family, as well as providing pro-bono advertisements in the Key Art Awards/Clio Entertainment Awards catalog. This holiday season, we also created a custom gift package to share with all of our clients, colleagues, and friends to spread awareness about the life-changing work of this incredible organization. To find out how you can make a difference for a neighbor in need, visit foodonfoot.org
BLT Helps and renowned photographer Brigitte Lacombe traveled to India document Heifer’s life-changing work with the women of rural Rajasthan. We were welcome into their homes and community meetings and saw, first-hand, the impact of Heifer’s gifts – not only resources and training, but also self-sufficiency and confidence. We then created a digital outreach campaign with interviews, videos, youth blogs, and stunning photography, raising over $150,000 for Heifer’s continuing work in India.
BLT Helps was honored to create some animations as well as the poster for Eating Animals, the feature-length documentary adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer’s critically acclaimed book of the same name. Produced and narrated by Natalie Portman, the film uses intimate narratives to explore what’s happened to our country in the past 40 years, as we’ve moved away from traditional farming communities to massive industrial farming complexes that produce a seemingly endless supply of so-called “cheap” meat, eggs, and dairy.
What starts out as a simple question – where does our meat come from? – quickly takes us down the rabbit hole of today’s industrial animal agriculture and becomes an exploration of the ultimate stakes of eating animals, the destruction of farming, and the complete unwinding of the American mythos. Produced and directed by Christopher Quinn, this unflinching exposé features hidden-camera footage exposing animal abuse and the toxic conditions under which our food is produced. Eating Animals is an eye-opening look at the American food production industry and the devastating costs of our dietary choices.
Half of America is single. The hook-up, texting and social media culture have profoundly altered the dating landscape. Traditional dating has become “outdated,” yet men and women still seek meaningful relationships. People are frustrated in love, but does anyone really know how to connect in today’s virtual world?
BLT Helps created the poster for The Dating Project, a new non-fiction film from executive producer Steve McEveety (The Passion of the Christ, Braveheart), produced by Paulist Productions, Mpower Pictures, and Family Theater Productions. This documentary follows five single people, ages 18-40, as they search for authentic and meaningful relationships. There is no script. There are no actors. These are real people trying to find love and happiness in an age of swiping left or right.
Over 30,000 African elephants die each year at the hands of poachers, and despite the global outcry over the killings, trafficking continues. The biggest key to saving these elephants from extinction are the rangers working on the ground within Africa’s national parks. Academy Award winning director Kathryn Bigelow and co-creator Imraan Ismail reached out to BLT Helps to design a poster for their virtual reality short documentary, The Protectors: A Walk in the Rangers’ Shoes. The experience, from National Geographic, Here Be Dragons, Annapurna Pictures, and African Parks, chronicles a day in the life of the rangers in Garamba National Park where they risk their lives to protect African elephants from ivory poachers. The Protectors premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival where attendees suited up with gear and VR headsets to experience the dangers that confront these rangers on a daily basis and to be in the presence of the majestic elephants they protect.
BLT Helps partnered with Amazon’s Transparent for #TransAwarenessMonth, creating this social media campaign for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Transgender Awareness Month is a time for transgender people and their allies to take action and bring attention to the community by educating the public and advancing advocacy around the issues of prejudice, discrimination, and violence that transgender people face.
For more about transgender visibility visit http://www.transequality.org/
The American Film Institute selects eight professional women from around the country each year to take part in their Directing Workshop for Women (DWW), a hands-on training program dedicated to expanding the number of women working professionally in screen directing. The program involves in-depth training in narrative filmmaking in an innovative workshop and requires participants to complete a short film or series by the end of the program. Although the DWW is tuition-free, participants are responsible for raising the funds necessary to complete their projects.
As a participant of AFI’s 2016 Directing Workshop for Women, Manjari Makijany, relied on a tremendous amount of industry support to shoot her project including Warner Bros., CBS, Universal, Blue Cloud Ranch, and the Will and Jada Smith Foundation, among others. Makijany approached BLT Helps to conceptualize and design film poster artwork and a trailer in a way that delicately represents the controversial subject matter of the film. In total, Makijany chose six different posters designed and donated by BLT Helps to represent her film, as well as one teaser and full length trailer.
I See You is about a suicide bomber on a New York subway who has a change of heart after a chance encounter with a child. The film will be showcased at an AFI/DGA screening in April 2017 before continuing on to festivals around the world.
BLT Helps designed both the key art and the opening titles to Mary Ellen Mark & Martin Bell’s TINY: The Life of Erin Blackwell. The film is a followup to the couple’s 1984 Academy Award nominated film, Streetwise. Tiny premiered at the Seattle International Film Festival. www.tinythefilm.com
BLT Helps designed an invitation and online banners for the Britannia Awards presented by BAFTA Los Angeles. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts is an independent charity that supports, develops, and promotes the art forms of the moving image – film, television and games.
BuyingPoultry.com is a free online guide that cuts through confusing labels and marketing claims and makes it easy to find the highest welfare products near you. BLT Helps has worked closely with Farm Forward and the ASPCA on the development of this project for years, including running a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds to get it off the ground. We’re pleased to announce the Beta site is now live! Check it out at buyingpoultry.com
BLT Helps designed posters for One World Peace Day, a free, annual, community event where teens are brought together to create and elevate through art projects, yoga, dance, live music, food, games, and inspiring guest speakers.
PATH is a family of agencies working together to end homelessness through customized supportive services, permanent housing development, and community engagement. BLT Helps created ads and covered the cost of ad placement in the Key Art Awards catalog to build organization awareness.
BLT Helps designed logos for Lady Parts Justice League – the first not safe for work, rapid response reproductive rights messaging hub that uses comedy, culture, and digital media to sound an alarm about the terrifying erosion of reproductive access so people will get off their asses and reclaim their rights.
Their name is an homage to Lisa Brown, a former Michigan state rep who, when in office, was banned from the statehouse floor for using the word vagina when arguing against a transvaginal ultrasound bill. When she asked what she SHOULD say, they suggested something less provocative like “lady parts.” The offensive nature of men uncomfortable with the word vagina, but perfectly comfortable legislating it, inspired the name.
The LAFD is a full-spectrum life safety agency protecting more than four million people who live, work and play in America’s second largest city. BLT Helps is honored to support these real-life heroes any way we can. We’ve provided logo designs, 3D renderings, and assets for the Matthew G. McKnight Fire Communications Center, Operations West Bureau, Operations Valley Bureau, Chief Officers Association, the Department Operations Center, and more – from social media branding to signage, plaques, and department stationery designs.
By refusing to allow the industry to evolve beyond gestation crates, the pork industry is selling our farmers and farmed animals short. BLT Helps built this site as an online petition, to stand with the thousands of farmers and millions of consumers who agree that it’s time for the NPPC, NPB, and Farm Bureau to stop standing in the way of progress.
BLT Helps and renowned photographer Brigitte Lacombe traveled to India to document Heifer’s life-changing work with the women of rural Rajasthan. We were welcome into their homes and community meetings and saw, first-hand, the impact of Heifer’s gifts – not only resources and training, but also self-sufficiency and confidence. We then created a digital outreach campaign with interviews, videos, youth blogs, and stunning photography, raising over $150,000 for Heifer’s continuing work in India.
WriteGirl pairs professional women writers with teen girls for weekly mentoring and monthly workshops, and publishes an anthology of their work each year. BLT Helps created an ad to recruit additional mentors to aid these girls in the developing their creativity, critical thinking, and the confidence they need to thrive.
The Windrider International Student Film festival honors emerging student filmmakers whose independent voices reflect the human condition with creativity and respect. BLT Helps created key art for their inaugural festival – coming in 2016.
The Angelus Student Film Festival serves as a showcase for student filmmakers whose works reflect themes such as redemption, spirituality, and triumph of the human spirit. BLT Helps supported the festival with key art for posters, billboards, postcards, and online banners.
The India Heritage Research Foundation is a non-profit, humanitarian foundation that provides orphanages, free schools, vocational training for women, medical treatment, and a variety of other rural development services. Parmarth Niketan is the largest ashram in Rishikesh, India, providing a spiritual haven to thousands of visitors from around the world.
BLT Helps designed a logo for the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity, which serves as a nexus for research on dyslexia and is a leading source of advocacy and information to better the lives of people with dyslexia.
Autism Speaks is dedicated to funding global biomedical research into the causes, prevention, treatments, and cure for autism; raising public awareness; and bringing hope to all who deal with the hardships of this disorder. BLT Helps designed a Press Kit announcing several charity events benefiting this organization.
BLT Helps produced this trailer for the film Tapestries of Hope with Freshwater Haven, a non-profit organization founded to address the dramatic social change that is required to stop physical, sexual and emotional abuse of women and children. This documentary exposes the rape and abuse of thousands of young girls in Zimbabwe by men who believe the myth that having sex with a virgin will cure their HIV/AIDS.
Logos were designed for several programs, including the Lift Every Voice choir and the 60th anniversary celebration event for Mary Lind Recovery Centers, providing residential substance abuse recovery services to homeless men and women throughout Southern California since 1949.
Heifer International is a global non-profit organization dedicated to sustainably ending world hunger and poverty by empowering communities. BLT Helps designed invitations, signage, and event décor for two Critics Choice Awards after parties honoring the inspirational work of Heifer International.
myMeditation is the first iPhone and iPad app brought to you by BLT Helps. We designed this fully customizable application to support a healthy, daily meditation practice through guided breath work. 100% of the proceeds from the sale of myMeditation fund design projects and training that benefits the non-profit and charitable organizations we serve. Purchase myMeditation here.
Logos were created for My Darling Theo, a foundation dedicated to animal rights and advocacy. BLT Helps designed the organization’s main logo, and those for the Hand to Paw Network, and the fundraising event, Walk for Whiskers.
Atlantic Theatre Company, an award-winning 501(c)3 non-profit, off-Broadway theatre, produced this new work by Ethan Coen; a play about two women so desperate to have a child that one of them will even sleep with a man.
An earthquake preparedness brochure was created for the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program, part of the Los Angeles City Fire Department. CERT supports community engagement by providing free lessons in fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations.
An interactive website was designed to collect feedback from parents, teachers, and staff of the Hollywood Schoolhouse to aid in Long Range Planning. The school’s curriculum celebrates the gender, ethnic, and social diversity of its student body (pre-school through 8th grade) and 30% of students receive scholarships.
Primary Purpose Productions is a Los Angeles-based non-profit media company that uses filmmaking to tackle health issues. A key art poster was created for Bed Ridden, a film that shines a light on substance abuse in a poignant and comedic way, underscoring the fact that this disease affects four in ten American families.
BLT Helps created a bumper for the Sundance Institute that was used between screenings at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. The Sundance Institute aims to discover and develop emerging creative talent, and advances the work of risk-taking storytellers worldwide.
A logo, signage, brochure, and website were designed for the Kabbalah Children’s Academy, a non-profit pre-school, day school, and college preparatory program for children of all religious backgrounds. Students leave KCA with a sense of purpose balanced with human dignity and tolerance.
Posters were made to support events like the Student Financial Aid Fundraiser, Community Service Day, and the Performing Arts department for The Buckley School, a non-profit college preparatory school emphasizing critical thinking, creativity, moral development, and global perspective since its inception in 1933.