World’s top illustrators combine for Parkinson’s platform

Stephen Chapman's picture
by Stephen Chapman

Havas Lynx Group has brought together some of the world’s leading illustrators to create a new online platform to support people with Parkinson’s.

The Manchester agency created Parkylife to combine stories, hacks, perks and profiles of inspiring people, despite their diagnosis.

“I was travelling from London on the train one evening and I saw a guy twitching and writhing about. The more he tried to hide it the worse it got. I said: ‘Don’t worry, I know exactly how you feel. I do the same, I have Parkinson’s’,” explained Matt Eagles, Parkinson’s Advocate and Head of Patient Engagement at Havas Lynx Group.

“Strangely his shakes began to subside - it was almost as if a huge weight had been lifted from his shoulders. I smiled at him and said: ‘Parkinson’s isn’t the end of the world, you can turn potentially awkward situations to your advantage you know’.

“All the way back home I was thinking how terrible that moment of diagnosis must have been for him and how frightened he looked on the train. I wondered if we could help him and others see Parkinson’s in a different light - and Parkylife was born.”

Illustrators and creatives, including Stan Chow, Cachete Jack, Linzie Hunter, Biff, Shotopop and Alva Skog have added their support to the initiative.

To make diagnosis less terrifying, illustrators came up with a pack of 52 cards, each showing “slices of positivity” that can be tapped into when a patient needs a boost.

These range from “built in jazz hands” and free seats on the bus to having a massive libido triggered by treatment.

“Parkylife isn’t just a pack of cards with advice on…it’s a way of living positively with chronic illness, its unique, it’s never been done before and it’s changing the way people with Parkinson’s view their lives,” continued Eagles.

The disease affects more than 145k people in the UK alone.

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