Elements of Good Design Design adapted from Robin

Elements of Good Design Design adapted from Robin

Elements of Good Design Design adapted from Robin SawyerFirst Flight High School The basics of design and layout Every designer works with three basic visual elements Copy or text (words set in type) Graphics or art (photographs, artwork and lines) White space (blank areas on the page) Formats and grids The physical size of the page is its

page format. Most city newspapers (dailies) use the broadsheet format (14 by 22 inches). Student newspapers typically use the tabloid format, which is approximately 11 by 17 inches. The format will, generally, dictate the width of your columns. Measurement Most graphic designers use the following measurement units: 1 inch = 6 picas 1 pica = 12 points 1 inch = 72 points

Principles of design Dominance Every single page and every double-page spread should have one dominant element. A dominant element is about 2.5 times larger than any other element on the spread. The dominant element serves as the visual entry point to the page. The action in a dominant photo should face into the spread rather than off the page. Without a dominant, the readers eye will either bounce

around from element to element or the reader will skip the page altogether. teasers 4-deck headline flag/nameplate standing sig byline cutline (caption) pull quote package

(sidebar info compliments Whats it called? jumpline refer (refers to a related story main deck with subhead folio 3-column photo

text / copy rule line 6-column format (standard format) jump line 4-column format (bastard measure) gutter (white space between columns) jump head

pull quote Whats itcalled Unity One way to unify a page is by using consistent internal and external margins. o Internal margins: white space between copy and graphics. Usually one pica between elements It differs by publication. For example, one student newspaper uses

two picas between unrelated items (two different stories, stories and ads, etc.) and one pica between related items (headline and story, photo and Unity on double-page spreads Placing a dominant photo or art so that it runs across the center of the two pages helps to

link the spread. Another name for a double-page spread is doubletruck. Unity on double-page spreads Use an eyeline (one pica of horizontal white space that extends across the spread). An eyeline should run at least six picas above

or below the horizontal center of the spread. Unity with type With few exceptions, no more than three different type styles should be used in any publication. (1) One style is chosen for the nameplate and the folios (standing sigs). (2) A second is chosen for the headlines. (3) The third is the text or body type. The only acceptable variation is an

occasional special type to achieve a specific purpose or communicate a definite idea for a major feature. Contrast One of the most important aspects of design is contrast. o Use of opposites in size, shape, weight and color or tone. A design should feature one dominant photo or other graphic contrasted by several smaller photos or graphics with horizontal as well as vertical photos. Different typefaces and the discreet use of

screens also create contrast. Repetition Repetition (rhythm) involves duplicating a color, graphic or typographic element to hold a design together. Balance Pages that are balanced can be folded in half vertically, with each half mirroring the other half of the page. This is called symmetrical balance.

Informally balanced pages feature weight distributed diagonally. This is preferred. o Big, bold graphic elements are placed toward the center, o White space, story copy, headlines and captions are pushed to the outside so that pages do not Consistency in newspaper Certain elements of a publication should remain unchanged.

Newspaper and newsmagazine staffs should establish the following and keep them the same from issue to issue: o Byline style o Folio style o Standing sig style o Caption style o Nameplate or flag Selecting and using type From a design standpoint, the basic component of any story is copy words set in type. When choosing typefaces in general, choose a font thats easy to read for body copy columns of copy for

stories. Serif fonts (those with "feet") are usually easier to read in large chunks. Typography guidelines Consider mixing a serif and sans serif font for your main deck and subheads. Set the leading in body copy at two points higher than your type size. (For example, 10-point body copy would be set with 12-point

leading.) Typography guidelines Choose a font family for headlines that has many different varieties as a way of mixing things up visually on the page. o Roman o Italics o Bold o Bold italics o Semibold o Semibold italics Modifying type vertically

Point size Changing the point size changes the height of the font. The bigger the point size, the taller the type. A headline in 72-point type is one inch tall because there are 12 points in a pica and six picas in an inch(6 x 12 = 72). Modifying type vertically Leading (pronounced ledding) the vertical spacing between lines of type more specifically, its the distance from one baseline to the

next. Leading must accommodate ascenders (part of letter above standard baseline - b, d, f, k, l, t) and descenders (part of letter below standard baseline - g, y, p j). The four basic page elements Photo Cutline Headline Text These elements should appear in this order if they are related. NEVER put art between the headline and the start of the story. Todays headlines are

Generally written downstyle (like a sentence without end punctuation) Run left aligned Are usually wide rather than narrow. Use decks optionally, as in this example: Hula hoops have Americans all a-twirl That 60s trend is back, and its

Types of headlines Kickers These lead into headlines by using a word or phrase to label topics or catch your eye. Theyre usually smaller than the main head, set in contrasting style or weight. A TREND RETURNS Hula hoops are on a roll Types of headlines Slammers This two-part head uses a boldface word or phrase to lead into a contrasting main headline. Some papers limit these to special features or jump headlines.

Hula hoops: A hot new hit Types of headlines Raw Wraps Most headlines cover all the text below; this treatment lets text wrap alongside. Hula hoops are circling the nation Types of headlines Hammers Hammers use a big, bold phrase to catch your eye, then add a lengthier deck below. Theyre effective, but used primarily for special stories.

Hoop-la Hula hoops are sweeping the nation this summer Types of headlines Tripods This head comes in three parts: a bold word or phrase (often call caps) and two lines of deck squaring off alongside. These are best reserved for special features. HULA HOOPS: They were hot in the 60s, but theyre hotter today Types of headlines Sidesaddle

This style lets you park the head beside, rather than above, the story. Its best for squeezing a story preferably one thats boxed into a show horizontal space. Hula hoops are circling the nation this summer How to size headlines on the page Generally, from largest to smallest as you go down the page. Page One broadsheet

o 54-72 point for the main story (five or six columns wide) o 30-36 for a secondary story that is one or two columns wide o 36-42 for the next story down that is four or five columns wide o 24-30 for the next one-column head o 30-36 for the next three- or four-column headline Sidebars and infographics A sidebar is any short feature that accompanies a longer story. An infographic (short for

informational graphic) blends text and illustrations to convey information visually clarifying the facts with charts, maps or diagrams. Types of sidebars Fast-fact box Bio box List Glossary Checklist Quiz Q&A Public-opinion poll

Quote collection Types of infographics Fever chart Bar chart Pie chart Table Map Ratings Timeline Step-by-step guide Diagram

General layout guidelines All stories should be shaped like rectangles or squares. Text that wraps below a photo should be at least one inch deep.

Avoid placing any graphic element in the middle of a leg of type. In vertical layouts stack elements: Avoid placing art at the bottom of a leg of type. o Photo o Cutline

o Headline o Text General layout guidelines Every page should have a dominant piece of art. A well-designed page is usually at least one-third art.

Avoid placing a photo or box directly on top of an ad. Avoid boxing stories just to keep headlines from butting; its best to box stories only if theyre special or different. General guidelines for text

The optimum depth for legs of text is between two and 10 inches. Avoid planning legs of text more than 20 picas wide, or less than 10 picas.

Use italics, boldface, reverse, or any other special effects in small doses. Type smaller than 8-point is often difficult to read. Use small type sparingly, and avoid printing it over a screen. General guidelines for headlines

Every story needs a headline. Headlines get smaller as you move down the page. Smaller stories get smaller headlines. 5-10 words is optimum for most headlines. Never allow an art

element to come between the headline and the start of a news story. Dont butt headlines. Vary their sizes, styles and the number of lines. General guidelines for photos

Shoot photos of real people doing real things. Directional photos should face the text they accompany. When in doubt, run ONE big photo instead of TWO small ones.

When using two or more photos, make one DOMINANT - that is, substantially bigger than any competing photo. Try to vary the shapes and sizes of photos on a page. General guidelines for cutlines

To avoid confusion, run one cutline per photo; each cutline should touch the photo it describes. When cutlines run beside photos, they should be at least six picas wide. When cutlines run below photos, square them off as evenly as possible

on both sides of the photo. They should not extend beyond either edge of the photo.

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