Stand Up to Cancer

Driving Awareness Around Clinical Trial Enrollment for Cancer Patients

Digital StorytellingVideo Production




Stand Up To Cancer’s mission is to raise funds to accelerate the pace of groundbreaking research, thus expediting the discovery of new, life-saving cancer treatments. SU2C knows that clinical trials are one of the most important mechanisms scientists have to translate their findings into new therapies. Unfortunately, however, only 5% of adult cancer patients participate in clinical trials. SU2C needed to dispel misconceptions about cancer clinical trials, providing patients and their loved ones with a better understanding of how trials work as well as various treatment types. Their goal was to help patients make an informed decision when considering whether to participate in a trial. The late Patrick Gavin, a patient advocate working with D2 Creative through Mill Pond Communications, served on the Van Andel Research Institute-Stand Up To Cancer (VARI-SU2C) Epigenetics Dream Team and had benefitted from two clinical trials on his own cancer journey. In a conversation with SU2C leadership, Pat showed them a few of our Luminations. As a result, SU2C asked us to create 14 Luminations for the new Clinical Trials section of the Stand Up To Cancer website.
Luminations are a “special sauce” of character animation, visual metaphors, and a touch of humor—unexpected in this setting, all grounded in science and rooted in humanity. A lot of work goes into making Luminations appear as simple as possible. As part of the engagement, we developed a set of animated characters with a look and feel that complement the SU2C brand, as well as the breadth of the cancer community. Throughout the engagement, we worked closely with our patient advocate and SU2C to ensure that nuanced messaging was carefully conveyed.
Luminations help “take the scary out” of cancer patient education, making it easier and more enjoyable for patients to not only learn about their disease and treatment options but understand and remember what they’ve learned. The 14 Luminations created for SU2C appear contextually throughout the new Clinical Trials section of the Stand Up To Cancer website as well as on the organization’s YouTube channel. Along the way, we also worked closely with Stand Up To Cancer’s in-house digital, production, and communications teams, providing copywriting and consulting on the layout for the new Clinical Trials site.


Cancer Clinical Trials: Biopsies

Character Development

Key Frames