SAN FRANCISCO, CA—Hunched over her ergonomic desk, graphic designer Raquel Gordon puts the finishing touches on an image for the front page of tomorrow’s San Francisco Business Times.
The news of the past week has centered on the Senate’s revision of the House AHCA bill: BCRA, the Better Care Reconciliation Act. Because of the impact BCRA is expected to have on insurance markets, it’s been of particular interest to business publications.
“I made a whole paycheck off of designs with Uncle Sam brandishing a bunch of banded-together dollar bills. For this piece,” Gordon said, changing tabs in Photoshop, “I have a piggy bank wearing one of those old-fashioned doctor headband things with the CD on it, except the piggy bank is a Republican elephant with this huge coin slot on its back so you can still tell it’s a piggy bank.”
“The problem is, I don’t know where to go from there. All the low-hanging fruit is gone.”
Gordon is one of perhaps hundreds of millennial graphic designers who are struggling to create images to accompany articles on the ongoing healthcare debacle in Congress.
“Things are looking pretty bleak,” agreed Kevin Leavitt, a freelance graphic designer for the Quad-City Times. “The effect of this healthcare bill is pretty hard to visualize, and a handful of symbols are off-limits. Like I’m pretty sure the red cross is a registered trademark, and apparently ‘no one would get it’ if I drew Hippocrates, Avicenna, and Paracelsus in a table-flipping bar fight with Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell.”
“My next piece will be simple, for the rubes in the back. Picture an open treasure chest, like a big old wooden chest with a perfect heap of gold coins and some jewels or crowns or something pouring out, and a stethoscope on top,” Leavitt said.
“After that though, I’m pretty much tapped out.”
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