Joakim Saul is the Åland artist behind the newly issued Zero tolerance charity stamp. At 37, he has already done most and worked with some of the largest customers in the world of advertising.
When asked to create a charity stamp on behalf of Åland Post, Joakim was intrigued, especially by the challenge of communicating the sensitive anti-drug message, the quintessence of the Zero tolerance stamp. He was also attracted to the idea of designing a legal tender which, in fact, a stamp is. At first glance, the stamp bears a certain resemblance to the design of a dollar bill.
Joakim found the commission challenging, in regards of both aesthetics and communication. The objective was to make people stop and think. Anti-drug messages are generally very difficult to communicate since they may very well create a boomerang effect, in this case, make the forbidden seem more attractive. With this in mind, he fell for the idea of "temptation leading into downfall" at an early stage, illustrated by suitable symbols such as forbidden fruit, carnivorous plants and snakes.
Leaping out from all other Åland stamps, the Zero tolerance stamp should bring further attention to the serious and important matter.
Note: Started in 2013 on the initiative of the Åland Government, the Zero tolerance project aims at preventing the use of various types of drugs among young people. The non-governmental health care organization Folkhälsan på Åland acts as project manager.