The first known case of COVID-19 in Tokyo occurred in late January. But from there the rate of infections were relatively slow compared to other nations and Japan had been slow in altering their behavior. Now, cases are spiking, which led Japanese designer Eisuke Tachikawa and his design firm Nosigner to put together these social distancing posters as part of an initiative called Pandaid, which combine humor with graphic design to remind us to maintain appropriate distance from others in order to curb the spread of the disease.
The series of posters incorporate various objects that are roughly 2 meters / 6 feet long, reminding us to stay that far apart. “Let’s stay one tuna apart” or “Let’s stay one tatami mat apart.” Some are more practical while others lend themselves to the more surreal: “Let’s stay one Beatles apart.”
Clearly not everyone will be familiar with the size of a tatami mat or a Tuna but the point is — and this is what the posters accomplish — we should use whatever measurement tool we’re familiar with as a ruler to remind ourselves to maintain appropriate distance. The posters are available for download here anyone can use them or print them out for display purposes.
The team at Nosigner have always been forward-thinking, and quick in acting when disasters strike. In the wake of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the team launched Olive, a wiki-style website that provides tips and tutorials on how disaster-stricken areas can use design to help improve their everyday life. In 2015, the team also collaborated with the government to create this disaster preparedness handbook.