Our Union Stories


Built from the Ground Up

This whole project began with LiUNA! Michigan District Council wanting to increase the number of new laborers. After some brainstorming with the team I was contracted with at the time, Modern Animal Strategy & Design, we can came up with Our Union Stories (OUS). A series of interviews and memories directly from the diverse men and women working in, on, around and under every part of Michigan.

We started with an Instagram and Facebook account to post our images (some examples here on the left) and a whole story in the post for readers to enjoy. Our goal was to create a sharing community for and with the laborers. So they, along with their family and friends, could share these stories and be proud of their careers. In doing so, more and more people could be exposed to vast benefits and opportunities within their field of work.

Only a few months into development, OUS grew enough that LiUNA! wanted a newsletter magazine designed by us as well. We got to work developing a pleasant and easy-to-read style that was filled with stories and updates for the laborers and their families. All while still interviewing laborers around the state to keep building OUS.

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I’ve always enjoyed telling people my crazy stories, but I love seeing everyone else’s stories even more.
— Robert Belcoure, Local 1076
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Shortly after the magazine hit the printers, we were tasked with creating a promotional video for the Detroit and Pontiac Locals. Our goal was to create something that both celebrated the achievements that the locals had accomplished and tell the story through a member who has lived through some of those achievements.

What we came up with was “Built by Labor,” a video that would serve as a steppingstone into a larger mini documentary series that would span several stories from laborers all over the state on a larger scale than we had ever done.

The series is still in development, but the trailer is out now! Check out the Facebook page here.