Find Your Voice: Porter-Gaud
We’re thrilled to announce the long-awaited launch of the Porter-Gaud view book. Porter-Gaud is an Episcopal, independent, coeducational, college-preparatory day school for children in grades 1 through 12. Nestled on a beautiful, 80-acre campus along the banks of the Ashley River, Porter-Gaud was founded in 1867 by The Reverend Dr. Anthony Toomer Porter. In the depths of his grief over the death of his child and the ravages of war, Dr. Toomer founded the Holy Communion Church Institute to educate children orphaned by the Civil War. The school was later known as Porter Academy and eventually Porter Military Academy. In one revolutionary moment in 1867, Dr. Toomer forever empowered, inspired, and enlightened generations of children.
The power of that history is still palpable at Porter-Gaud. The most amazing part to me is seeing how their origin story finds their way into everything that’s happening now – from the classroom to the soccer field to the auditorium stage – and everyone – teachers, students, parents, and administration.
We had the pleasure of partnering with our pals at Gil Shuler Graphic Design on this amazing project, which included a reimaging of the Porter-Gaud brand (GSGD), a manifesto (BI), print ads, posters, and collateral (GSGD), and the online view book (team). To make a sweet project even sweeter, the mightily talented Brennan Wesley got in on the act – shooting both the incredible imagery and video. Call it a trifecta, people. Serious. Awesomeness.
We kicked off the project with interviews with Porter-Gaud parents with children in the Lower, Middle and Upper Schools. Next, we spoke with Head of School Dubose Egleston. Our project leads, Executive Director of the Porter-Gaud Foundation, Tucker Branham, and Director of Communications Brink Norton, provided invaluable insight and handpicked the students and faculty highlighted in the view book.
During one epic day on-campus, we interviewed Ananya Chag from the Lower School, Paxon Wojcik from the Middle School, high school senior Josie Griffith, and History teacher Daniel Jordan. I’ll let the videos tell the story, but suffices to say, these are some amazing kids and teachers.
While we here at Blue Ion had the pleasure of writing the manifesto and designing the interface to house the videos Brennan produced, Gil and his team went to work turning dry statistics into engaging infographics and Porter-Gaud’s WATCH Words into truly cool, iconic works of art that you’ll see on the site.
We see things in children they have yet to see in themselves – strengths, symphonies, civilizations, truths, voices.
And every day, a passionate community of teachers, parents, coaches, staff, and administration goes to work to show them, to draw forth their voices, to reveal their truths – in classrooms, on stages, in studios and on fields, in homes – and everywhere life takes them.
Together, we awaken. We coax. We challenge. We discuss. We debate. We mentor. We nurture. We practice. We push. We shape. We remind. We reinforce. Because we believe learning is about opening up – not to just one thing, but everything. To possibility and doubt. Excitement and fear. For only in the presence of both do we seek truth – and discover who we are.
Those moments of discovery are what we live for. When children articulate exactly what they’re thinking or feeling. When a piece of literature stirs something deep within them. When their line of code comes to life. When a furrowed brow turns into wide-eyed understanding. When something in their head, heart and spirit clicks and connects. And they finally dance, perform, and sing – in a voice we always knew was there.
Find your voice.
The result of all this? A renewed sense of purpose for everyone in the Porter-Gaud extended family, a literal place for the sharing of more stories, and a means for attracting more amazing students and faculty to this innovative school on the river.