Meet the illustrator who every year provides a creative motif for the non-profit Hus Forbi project "One Meal A Day", which seeks to create strong food communities for the homeless. A project Minimum supports with a t-shirt, where the entire profit goes directly to the Hus Forbi homeless organization and one free meal a day for the homeless. Thomas Iburg, 36, from Aalborg puts into words the genesis, the process, and the message behind this year’s creative motif and symbolic back print on support t-shirt.

How did the idea for the visuals on the poster and now the t-shirt come about?
For a while I had been thinking about an idea of mixing styles and what visual narrative you can achieve with it. It probably comes from the fact that, somewhat atypically for an illustrator, I have not focused heavily on an illustrative direction or style, which is otherwise typical if you want to make a career as an illustrator. Cut to Uffe Truelsen, the zealot and initiator behind the Hus Forbi project "One Meal a Day", briefing me that the poster had to have an aesthetic value that makes you want to keep it hanging and maybe even collect them year after year. In addition, there had to be a visual message that communicated something about the socially disadvantaged and the homeless.
Four ideas were pitched, and among them I had submitted the idea with the hobbled person inside the scrubbed icon of a person. Just as a quick sketch. Uffe pointed it out straight away and we kicked the other three ideas to the corner.

The creative process?
I often work with a combination of digital and analogue, but this subject was begging to be painted analogue. I painted in acrylic on A4 and was so excited about the result that I painted it in full poster size with all the hassle that goes with photographing and post-editing. It was worth it, and I am super happy with the result. I think it both looks good and encapsulates the purpose of "One Meal A Day".

What was important to you in the visual communication of the illustration?
I would like to push a story that the homeless and socially disadvantaged are a part of us all, and that it is not impossible that we ourselves, or someone we care about, end up in a place where ordinary everyday life no longer makes sense. So, a reminder that we must treat our homeless with respect and dignity, and that we can all end up on the fringes of society.

The t-shirt will be launched and sold in collaboration with Hus Forbi exclusively on minimumfashion.com from 29.03.2023.