No Comments

Design Army: A Special Gift for a Special Client

Written by in Inspire


[Pictured Above: Ballet troupe, one in Wig and four in tutus, crossing Pennsylvania Avenue around 7 am last summer. Any questions?]

Pum and Jake Lefebure of Design Army (Washington, DC) believe creative motivation supersedes cash promise. The Washington Ballet (TWB) surely benefitted from this attitude: DA’s collaborative effort called Wonderland, TWB’s 10th anniversary book and fundraiser, is a work of art, pro bono.

TWB, a young organization that has blazed a bright path, was one of Design Army’s first clients and Design Army gave their loyal client a gift: a commemorative fundraising tool that no ballet in the United States could afford — not even The New York City Ballet. This 84-page coffee table book is over the top, designed to capture attention and drive in cash. It does.


The book was collaboration between TWB Artistic Director Septime Webre, Design Army and photographer Cade Martin. The design and photography were pro bono. The printing was billed at cost. worked pro bono), the book’s narrative is based upon ten of Mr. Webre’s favorite performances, a list culled from more 30. The selections were based upon costumes, number of performers, and adherence to the “Wonderland” theme and suitability to location selections.

Location scouting took three months. The locations were not DC tour bus stops; rather they were artistic and out of the way places that included the Old Soldiers Home, the former MacMillan Filtration Plant, the National Arboretum, the former Wonder Bread Factory , Meridian Center, Café Napoleon and Pennsylvania Avenue. The places greatly shaped the composition of each photograph.

But how do you tie ten diverse performances into one cohesive narrative? Why, with Alice in Wonderland, of course!

Wonderland arrived in time for The Washington Ballet’s 2009-2010 season opening. The limited print run of 2,000 has reinforced TWB’s high caliber of performance and creative chutzpah. Books like this rarely get made. Neenah bought into the print run thus helping to reduce per unit costs. The book was printed on Eames Canvas Solar White.