Deutsch NY Shares ‘The Last Family Portrait’ for WATERisLIFE

By Erik Oster 

Deutsch New York launched a new campaign for WATERisLIFE, in which the agency and photographer Neil DaCosta traveled to the Omo Valley in Ethiopia to provide families there with framed family portraits.

“Most people go into these rural areas of Ethiopia, snap a picture of the tribes and then leave…This is the first time anyone has physically printed, framed and given them a family portrait,” explained WATERisLife president Kristine Bender. “You could see the gratitude on their faces. Knowing we are making a difference by capturing an important moment in their life, the project’s goal isn’t just to give family portraits, it’s to keep these families alive.”

Since in the area somebody dies from water-related disease every 20 seconds, many of these portraits could provide the families with documentation of a lost loved one, making them all the more meaningful. It’s a sad reality that the photos are likely not only the first but also “The Last Family Portrait” for these families, but it’s also uplifting seeing each family’s joy and gratitude at having the photo. Although only a dozen or so families are featured in the ad, over one hundred families in the area had their photos taken. Print ads featuring the portraits and a call to action will run in publications including Forbes, The Economist and Bloomberg. Donations from the effort will be used for “digging wells that will give Omo Valley families and others the clean water, sanitation and hygiene they so desperately need.”


Agency: Deutsch New York

Chief Creative Officer: Kerry Keenan
Executive Creative Director: Menno Kluin
Creative Directors: Sam Shepherd, Frank Cartagena, Julia Neumann
Art Director: Brittany Rivera
Copywriter: Kevin Meagher
Photographer: Neil DaCosta
Design Director: Juan Carlos Pagan
Designer: Brian Gartside
Retoucher: James Cullinane
Director of Integrated Media: Karen Benson
Director of Integrated Production: Joe Calabrese
Director of Digital Production: Suzanne Molinaro
Asst. Digital Producer: Libby Carespodi
Print Producer: Donald Odell
Producer: Joe Pernice
Post Producer: Francess Tom-Sahr
Senior Editor: Eric Grush
Editor: Pete Slife, Marcus Land
Digital Designer: Alex Miller
Developer: Shane Akins