Mak­ing the cover

Computer Arts - - Cover Artist -

So the age-old ques­tion: how does a mag­a­zine cov­er­ing graphic de­sign present it­self to the de­sign com­mu­nity? Is pure, un­fussy min­i­mal­ism the best way to show­case the work? Or is a de­sign mag­a­zine ob­li­gated to get in­volved and present it­self with the spirit of the times?

It’s a ques­tion we wres­tle with fre­quently, and in truth, we’re no closer to an­swer­ing it. Cer­tainly, this is­sue’s fo­cus on de­sign trends (it­self, a won­der­fully con­tro­ver­sial and neb­u­lous sub­ject mat­ter) left us pon­der­ing how best to com­mu­ni­cate the rich con­tent on of­fer.

If we wanted to be ab­so­lutely cut­ting edge, we’d have prob­a­bly taken all the im­ages off, cre­ated a cus­tom font and typed the full cat­a­logue of cur­rent trends black-on-black, and up­side down.

Min­i­mal, ob­tuse and dar­ing cer­tainly makes for eye-catch­ing de­sign. Do read­ers need to read the cov­er­lines or would they rather feel the ex­pe­ri­ence? It’s im­pos­si­ble to know for sure, but as a news­stand pub­li­ca­tion we’re bound to make con­ces­sions to tra­di­tional news­stand prin­ci­ples (un­less we’re feel­ing par­tic­u­larly frisky) and the fi­nal cover ar­rived pretty much fin­ished in the first draft: a bru­tally edited hand­ful of key im­ages form the dozens on of­fer that some­how sum­marised the preva­lent mood of sim­ple, el­e­gant sim­plic­ity.

Above and be­low: The fea­ture it­self was in­formed by the cover de­sign... de­spite the abun­dance of as­sets avail­able, our ed­i­to­rial ob­jec­tive was to dis­play trends with just key, clear ex­am­ples.

Top: The mood and look of the cover was very much in­spired by the su­perb Com­puter Art Col­lec­tions cov­ers de­signed by Luke O’ Neill. Sim­ple geo­met­ric shapes and colours.

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