John Deere Sustainability Report
Strategy / Elements / Collateral / Video / Web Design / Social Media
Proof Points
The Brief
Can design inspire sustainability?
The Opportunity

In today’s business climate, John Deere’s customers demand proof points. Sustainability is a top-of-mind initiative for this multinational corporation and this report would bring to light the great work the company is doing on several fronts on behalf of customers, employees, dealers, suppliers, shareholders, and communities around the globe. Secondarily, it needed to demonstrate that Deere views Sustainability in many ways beyond Environmental.

Visual Strategy

For starters, FUEL got to work on the pagination and mood board development to begin solidifying the concept around the report in ways that demonstrated Deere’s impact on people around the world while bringing the company’s purpose to life.
John Deere Sustainability Report design elements


The ornate detail of layered cut paper inspired the illustrations and iconography used throughout the report. We also introduced the use of a gradient – yellow to green – to communicate a sense of movement and energy through color.

John Deere Sustainability Report illustrations
John Deere Sustainability Report renewable energy illustration
John Deere Sustainability Report iconography


For photography, FUEL art directed and captured lifestyle imagery in multiple locations. The catalog of images would emphasize humanity and reinforce the notion that while the company sells machines and technology, it’s done in service of people.

John Deere Sustainability Report photo collage


In reality, this annual report design acts more like a four-piece collateral system. FUEL helped establish a distinctive visual approach for each of the four sections of the report: A high-level setup, Environmental, Social, and Governance.
John Deere Sustainability Report center spread
John Deere Sustainability Report globe detail
John Deere Sustainability Report infographic detail

Web Design

To bring key elements of the annual report online, FUEL helped John Deere add a Sustainability section to Looping video and motion graphics helped to accentuate custom illustrations and iconography. This energized the infographics and the overall UX.

Social Media

FUEL helped the client develop a series of snackable content suited for social media. Leveraging attention-grabbing motion graphics, the series of posts taught key points about John Deere’s initiatives.

John Deere Sustainability Report social media outreach 1
John Deere Sustainability Report social media outreach 2


Extensive storyboarding helped build the flow of the Sustainability Report video. Creatively, FUEL used a combination of motion, supers, and stills to tell the story. The video proved to be a successful complement to the printed report as the client leveraged it on web and social media.


John Deere Sustainability Report awards

Collateral | Excellence Award

ADAI 64th Annual Design Exhibition

Photography | Excellence Award

ADAI 64th Annual Design Exhibition

Bill Bollman
Creative Director

Bill Bollman is FUEL’s Creative Director. Before co-founding FUEL in 2001, he worked for Horizon Communications, JW Morton and Basler Design Group. Bill studied Illustration at Hawkeye Tech in Waterloo, Iowa. An expert in the “old ways” of hands-on print production, these skills influence his work in the digital world to this day. His work throughout his career has been featured in international publications including Graphis, How International Design, Communication Arts, and The One Book as well as numerous design annuals and reference books.

Hometown: West Union, Iowa
Involved in Design and Marketing since 1988
Interests: Fitness, Travel, Movies