OH... I thought they were pretty strict on how you put the things together as far as format goes.
Not that I've noticed. If the company has a strict branding strategy, I've noticed that annual reports won't stray too far from it; or, they'll follow it pretty closely, but with some twist on the brand to make it stand out.
Annual reports are basically just to show the stockholders how the company is doing, so they'll usually include numbers on the performance of the company. As far as I know, there's not really a standard for exactly what information has to go in there besides the basic, "We made a gazillion dollars, and our investments have quintupled, aren't you glad you're a stockholder? Now look at these pretty charts!"
Since most companies want the stockholders to think they're doing well, they will usually splurge for better quality for the annual report, so you might get to play with things like spot varnishes or embossing.
Also dont get too fancy with the colours on the numbers as that can result in misinterpretation...like most publication designs- keep it simple. If you highlight anything let it be only the "total" sums.
Stay as close as possible to the files they have given you as you "run away" creatively.
Purity and simplicity... and ubuntu.
If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu
I agree with this sentiment. Graphic design in respect to only doing print work is becoming secondary, and therefore much more competitive. Finding a job that involves some graphic design is a good start...
Unless you are the Red Cross don't get into the charity work pattern. You can eat some time if you're making something you can use, resell or learn from (something new). Clients you'll want to work for...