Selected Work

Online portfolio of Steven Cretney CGD – aka, the Forest.

Humans of Nelson

"May I take your photo?" This simple question has helped Ryan Oakley shed light on the characters and stories of Nelson, British Columbia. A spin-off of the popular Humans of New York, Ryan has built up an inspiring collection of photographs and stories on his website, Facebook page and now a 232-page hardcover book.

Printed and bound in Canada on recycled FSC certified paper with vegetable based inks.

Buy the book.

Nelson Votes

Why pledge to vote? Simple. We're social creatures, influenced by the actions and opinions of our friends, family and peers. Oh, and science. Research shows that if we say we're going to do something — and actually commit to it — we're more likely to do it.

Nelson Votes encourages citizens of Nelson to engage in their municipal elections and aims to make politics a bit more fun by hosting unconventional election events.

Pembina Foundation

The Pembina Foundation supports environmental research and education initiatives focused on energy related issues.

The primary goal of the new site is to encourage philanthropic giving and process online donations in a secure and simple way. With a focus on easy navigation, donor stories and showcasing over 600 publications, this responsive site was designed with a clean aesthetic. Built by Ryan Dorward.

Pembina Institute

The Pembina Institute is focused on solving today’s greatest energy challenges — reducing the impacts of fossil fuels while supporting Canada’s transition to an energy system that is clean, safe and sustainable.

Distilling technical and complex information into something engaging and sharable, I have created numerous infographics for the Pembina Institute on a range of energy topics, including transportation, fossil fuels and energy efficiency.

Kootenay Co-op

The Kootenay Co-op is a member-owned grocer focused on natural, organic foods and products. As a cornerstone of Nelson's community, the Co-op actively promotes sustainable living; rippling from its mission to its buying and operational practices, to advocacy, education and community outreach.

After using a variety of styles and a number of inconsistent “logos” with no visual direction or focus for years, I was hired to design a visual identity package that resonates with the Co-op, helping it to successfully venture into its next phases of existence.

Read the GDC's sustainable design case study: Engaging Community with Graphic Design.

Kootenay Co-op and
Nelson Municipal Library

Expand your library, expand your mind. When the Nelson Library launched an exciting new expansion project, the reality of needing funding created an opportunity to collaborate with the Kootenay Co-op.

Seasonings: a year of local flavour in words and recipes is a literary cookbook that celebrates growing food, eating well and embracing the four seasons. The book has raised significant funds to help the library grow, continuing the discovery of new ideas and connections. Seasonings was short-listed in the 2011 Canadian Culinary Book Awards.

Printed and bound in Canada on recycled FSC certified paper with vegetable based inks.

Stunning photography by Heather Goldsworthy of Imageobscura.

The Weave

In addition to scientific expertise, sustainability practitioners must skillfully facilitate the co-creative group processes necessary for actual systemic change. The Weave is an in-depth guide for sustainability practitioners that clearly communicates a template for designing strategic engagements, suggestions, examples, and guiding principles to support increased engagement and buy-in. Grounded with extensive data from sustainability practitioners and professional facilitators, patterns in successful change initiatives were identified and integrated with the Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development (FSSD) and dialogue-based methodologies. The Weave is currently being translated beyond English.

I designed and co-authored The Weave with Tracy Meisterheim and Alison Cretney as an outcome of our award winning masters thesis.

Read The Weave.

District of Wells

The Wells Barkerville Mountain Trails are an incredible network of single and double track trails with a history that stretches back to the Gold Rush era.

The Forest planned, designed and developed a promotional website in collaboration with Richard Young. As a key focal point in a multi-prong marketing campaign to raise awareness and provide information for visitors to the area, the site clearly presents trail information and maps, while enticing visitors and helping plan their trip. The design subtly touches on the unique nature of the area and showcases stunning photographs. Maps were developed for online viewing and print outs.

A custom logo for the trail system was created to provide clarity and consistency for trail markers, maps and marketing materials.

Trail Crew Design Corp.

Trail Crew is a dedicated crew of riders who design and build world class mountain bike trails. The logo and website were designed in collaboration with Derek Bisbing.

Water Matters

Water Matters is an NGO with the expertise and resources to improve public understanding and address Alberta's watershed issues.

Releasing reports is a primary way for Water Matters to share scientifically relevant and current information. Why Water Matters is a report on their 2009 activities and finances. More than just an annual report though, the booklet encourages an appreciation for water while inspiring donations from supporters. Making the Connection comprehensively details the important role of watershed features. Watered Down highlights some of the most compelling testimony from the recent federal hearings by the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development. Reports are printed on FSC certified paper and availble online.

Learn why Water Matters

Mountain Equipment Co-op

Until recently, the MEC catalogue was a primary source of information for co-op members. Mailed to approximately 530,000 members nationwide in both official languages, the catalogue was a staple for Canadian outdoor enthusiasts. I was very proud to work extensively on the Fall + Winter MEC catalogue while on contract with MEC.

I was responsible for laying out product pages and creating all the non-product pages, including the very successful Big Wild teaser (concept created with Philip Torrens) and the sustainability page (concept created with Philip Torrens and photographed by Linda Mackie).

Bristlecone Communications

A Grizzly Challenge: Ensuring a Future for Alberta's Threatened Grizzlies is a report co-published by seven environmental groups and written by renowned grizzly bear expert, Jeff Gailus, M.Sc. The report analyzes current recovery efforts in Alberta, concluding that the provincial government is not doing enough to protect one of the most threatened grizzly bear populations in North America.

The Forest designed the report using images by John Marriot and Florian Schulz.

Spruce Groove Records

Disbanded independent record label from Spruce Grove, Alberta. I designed the logo and several CD covers, including Three Boxes Red (in collaboration with Michelle Wolstenholme) and the compilation, ...and I love her.

Mod Nights

Club nights and events celebrating 60's English R&B, Classic and Northern Soul, Brit Pop and Indie Rock. Examples shown include handbills for a tribute to the late Joe Strummer and a replication of the 1967 movie Blow Up for The Mod Club in Vancouver. Handbills for two Transatlantic events in Edmonton, a poster for the Vancouver and Montreal Mod Club's Halloween party (illustration appropriated from the Penguin edition of the Anthony Burgess novel, A Clockwork Orange) and a poster for Edmonton's One Night Stand.

MacEwan College

Each year, MacEwan College’s English Department invites a professional Alberta writer to be a writer in residence and offer free consultations to students and the public. I desigend the 11th and 12th Writer In Residence posters, showcasing Nigel Darbasie and E.D. Blodgett, while employed at MacEwan. Both posters garnered international design and marketing awards.

Mountain Equipment Co-op

MEC's holiday promotion is a multi-platform campaign including in-store signage, website graphics and direct email pieces. The campaign is based on the idea of Wrapping up Adventure with a climbing rope and a very MECish gift tag – differentiating MEC from other retailers.

Banners with enlarged 3D corrugated cardboard gift tag gift cards with actual rope (using real climbing knots) were produced for every store’s entrance way. Instrumental to successful execution was design of the banners in such a way that enabled easy setup by unknown store staff in locations nation wide. Elements from the tag were used as web graphics, bringing the holiday promotion online. MEC members were sent several emails leading up to the holiday season, and each of these tied the signage imagery and website together. This holiday campaign was used for a few years because of its succes. Original concept created with Lydia Avsec.

Trips for Kids Vancouver

Trips for Kids Vancouver is a non-profit society dedicated to enabling youth with barriers to experience mountain trails. Downbeat is their interactive social event that showcases video and still photography, live performances and a silent auction. The design of the 2008 and 2009 posters prominently feature images by presenting photographers (Kari Medig and Ian Hylands).

Forest Projects

It is no secret... I love riding bicycles. And lucky for me, so does my wife. Imagine the shock when an ultrasound was taken showing the addition to our family was already riding! The image was used to announce our news to family and friends.

All Bikes Go To Heaven.
The first designs in a series of t-shirts celebrating the noblest invention and its virtuous trajectory. If more people used bikes instead of cars, the world would be a much better place.