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Local Teens Get Color Rite for Design Partnership that Aims to Raise Awareness for Social Justice

16/01/2021

Local Teens Get Color Rite for Design Partnership that Aims to Raise Awareness for Social Justice

X-Rite and Pantone teamed up with WMCAT teen artists and local print shop, Ambrose, to create uniquely designed and printed apparel to addresses social justice issues in West Michigan and country.

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH., January 18, 2021 Led by the creative visions and designs from local teen artists, X-Rite and Pantone partnered with the nationally-recognized Teen Arts Tech Program at the West Michigan Center for Arts Technology (WMCAT) and local print shop Ambrose at WMCAT, to uniquely design and print apparel that brings awareness to social justice issues.

The final t-shirt features a raised fist with words and abbreviations like BLM, unity, LGBTQ, justice, opportunity, and more designed into it. Underneath the fist in big, bold, 1970's-style letters it reads, We Get Color Rite. The shirt is available in three colors and can be purchased on Ambrose's merchandise website here. The shirt will also be sold to X-Rite employees and customers through their internal e-commerce site. Proceeds of the We Get Color Rite t-shirt support teen artists in the community and WMCAT's mission to provide equitable access to opportunity in West Michigan.

X-Rite and Pantone have a long history of supporting educational programs in the graphic design community and this project in partnership with WMCAT aligns with our corporate Diversity and Inclusion initiatives, shared Jeffrey McKee, CFO, X-Rite. [WMCAT students] Elijah and Evelyn and their teaching artist perfectly captured the approach and design we were looking for. As a company, we stand side-by-side with our West Michigan community as we work together to build a future based on equity and justice.

With corporate headquarters in Grand Rapids, X-Rite and Pantone sponsored a paid learning experience in which leaders worked virtually alongside two WMCAT high school students who both attend Grand Rapids Public Schools. Together with WMCAT Teaching Artist Oscar Neri, the students were led through a process that produced several design options. The students presented their ideas directly to leadership at X-Rite Pantone.

The main goal for the [fist] symbol on the design was to show unity and support to the Black community, shared Evelyn Lopez Maldonado, WMCAT Teen Artist and a junior at C.A. Frost Environmental Science Academy, while also showing the company cares about the Black Lives Matter movement as a whole.

After drafting and feedback, the designs were finalized for print and sent to Ambrose at WMCAT, a custom-design and print shop with a social enterprise model that funds WMCAT's mission. When we found out about Ambrose, we were thrilled that WMCAT was a one-stop-shop for this project, explained McKee.

At WMCAT, we are committed to providing our students with opportunities to engage in the community, explained Trudy-Ngo Brown, director of Arts Tech at WMCAT. Thankfully companies like X-Rite and Pantone see the value of young voices in our community and provide them with real-world experiences. By doing so, they are supporting teens as they build their creative confidence.

The partnership created a final design and t-shirt that turned out to be beneficial on many levels:

Apparel to further awareness for social justice

X-Rite and Pantone customers and employees encouraged to engage in the community

Locally headquartered company supporting creative journeys of teens in Grand Rapids

Local teens gain real work experience

Each shirt printed by Ambrose provides funds that go back into WMCAT

Working on this project gave me an opportunity to learn about organizations in our community, shared Elijah Brown, WMCAT Teen Artist and junior at Grand Rapids University Preparatory Academy. It taught me that I could create designs and logos for companies not just myself. I've gained real-world experience and confidence that I can do new things.

About X-Rite

Founded in 1958, X-Rite Incorporated is a global leader in the science and technology of color and appearance. With Pantone, X-Rite employs more than 800 people in 11 countries. The company's corporate headquarters are located in Grand Rapids, Mich., with regional headquarters in Europe and Asia and service centers across Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and the Americas. X-Rite offers a full range of solutions used by manufacturers, retailers, printers, photographers and graphic design houses to achieve precise management and communication of color and appearance throughout their processes. X-Rite products and services are recognized standards in the printing, packaging, photography, graphic design, video, automotive, paints, plastics, textiles and medical industries. For further information, please visit www.xrite.com.

About West Michigan Center for Arts Technology (WMCAT)

West Michigan Center for Arts Technology (WMCAT) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide a culture of opportunity for people to create social and economic progress in their lives and community. Through after-school and summer arts and technology programs, WMCAT engages high school students in creativity and civic engagement. WMCAT provides career training in medical coding, medical billing and pharmacy technician fields to under and unemployed adults. WMCAT also has two social enterprise businesses: Ambrose, a commercial screen-printing business, Public Agency, and a design thinking consultancy. Learn more at wmcat.org.

About Ambrose at WMCAT

Ambrose at WMCAT is a custom design and screen-printing business that is focused on quality, creativity and providing social and economic opportunity in West Michigan. As a social enterprise, customers contribute in their efforts simply by doing business with them. Ambrose at WMCAT sets clients apart with c
LINK: https://www.xrite.com/about-us/news-events/press-releases/wmcat...
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