Type Integration

28 Jun

Cover spreads for magazine articles are often comprised of one dominant image, a header, author, and a deck. It seems strange, but rarely do we see even the most progressive magazines straying far from this norm (minus the occasional spread designed solely with typography). This makes sense, no need fix what isn’t broken. There are essential bits of information that a reader needs to be able to obtain quickly and easily when approaching a new article.

While flipping through Wired this week, I noticed that for the most part they also seem to stick with this pattern of a dominant image plus the typical article info, but what I found interesting and notable is that in almost all cases they integrated typography with the image in a creative or innovative way. As a designer I appreciate this. Just because there is an accepted and relatively standard format for communicating this introductory information does not mean that the audience is not looking for originality and is no reason for designers to become complacent.

Peruse the excerpts below from Wired Magazine’s July issue. They display originality in placement, size, and treatment of the type. While the most conventional is probably the coffee article, it does show subtle, but excellent type choices. In this spread the type is placed carefully so as to mimic the shape of the coffee bean image. This creates a feeling of balance and symmetry throughout the spread. The others are fairly obvious. We see the type used to help reinforce the concept of pulse lines, headlines with unexpected spacing, and type that is treated as part of the image itself. Bravo Wired, as usual, I won’t hesitate to pick up future issues!


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