In a previous post I looked at how important layouts are in editorial design. Today I look at one of the areas briefly discussed in more detail; typography.
Typography is everywhere you look. Even when you think something hasn’t been creatively designed to servie a purpose, it has. Day-to-day cleaning product, Coca Cola bottles, DVD covers – you name it, they all feature typography and have been designed in ways to suit many different audiences. However, the typography you find in magazines is far more interesting and intricate than a bottle of bleach and I personally find it to be one of the key components to keeping printed magazines alive.
For magazines, typography is essential. The size of the body copy will determine whether you’re taken seriously as a publication as will the font choices. You don’t want to be writing a serious political piece and have it designed in 16pt VAG Rounded. Traditionally the body font for content is very generic with some form of serif font like Times or Nimrod. But this isn’t the typography that gets me excited in the publishing world – it’s the headers of the article.
More often than not each article is given it’s own unique flair of creativity with its heading. They are now becoming statement pieces over a double page spread that lures the reader into turning the page for article. This isn’t always the case, some magazines follow a very standarised templated layout that uses the same straight-edged typography throughout. This is fine for your piblications that need a quicker turn around or have less staff designing the pages. However, when there is time and less restrictions to work to, this is where a magazine can really come to life with typograhy. This can’t really be appreciated in the same way through a digital replica as you don’t get to see the curves and the detail in the same way. The paper stock will add more dimension to the typography and bring it to life more than a glossy tablet screen ever could. This is why I belive that typography is one element of editoiral design that digital counterparts cannot compete with in the print vs digital debate.
Here are some examples of typography in their most creative forms in magazine articles across the globe. You can easily see that they have their own unique qualities that make the articles stand out to the reader.