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View Full Version : Need help putting together a magazine ASAP!




suneohair
Nov 28, 2006, 09:20 AM
Hello. So I was working on a project for a class this semester. It is called VOX and it is a literary magazine. My original plan was to do a great design and get it printed nicely.

That was shot down by the folks in charge. Which meant we were stuck with printing on Campus printers.

We have quite a few submissions, so we are good there. Only problem is I am the only one in the group of 5 with any design sensibility. Originally I was going to put it together with InDesign, but honestly I have no clue how to use it right now.

So, what do you think the quickest way to put this together would be. Like, I would need to do it Thursday... I have all day. I am good with Photoshop and Illustrator, so I am not a complete newbie to Adobe. I cracked open InDesign the other day and was at a loss though.

Do you think I would be able to grasp enough of InDesign by then? I am really at a loss. This course was only one credit hour, yet it sucks up the time of 8 credit hours. Which I think is ridiculous. Plus we only meet once a week... For some perspective they are making it a 3 hour course next semester because of this.

As far as content I have text and some pictures. Mostly text.

Some font recommendations would be great as well. I really like Helvetica Neau but I think it might be too skinny... Thanks everyone.



dpaanlka
Nov 28, 2006, 09:30 AM
If you have Pages (or the Pages trial) that is like a really easy to use page-layout app, with some capabilities of the big guys like InDesign.

Otherwise, yes you should be able to quickly get up to speed on InDesign. Photoshop and Illustrator are not meant for laying anything out on a page.

vectormasked
Nov 30, 2006, 01:22 AM
Yeah. Use Indesign and only Indesign. If you have QuarkXpress you could use it too. but don't use Photoshop nor Illustrator.

As to the type. It is extremely hard to say what will work. I work at a design agency and we don't just choose a typeface just because it is nice or because we feel like using it. We spend a lot of time gathering info and researching to come up with the best possible solution.
Avoid using free fonts if possible. and don't use the preinstalled fonts that every computer comes with. Also it is not very recommended to use Sans Serif typefaces for big chunks of text or projects where there's many pages (ie Books, Bible, Magazines, etc..) and this is because sans serif fonts make us tired when reading big chunks of text. The eyes find it harder to read and to stay on the line you are reading. Of course you can also improve the readability of Sans Serif typefaces with the tracking, leading and point size and a good and solid grid.
With almost no info regarding your project...I would still suggest to use a Serif typeface. It could allow you to come up with more variables and ideas.

Serif: FF Scala, TheSerif, Mrs Eaves, Fresco, FF Maiola, Fedra Serif....and there's of course the usuals Serif typeface families like...Caslon, Garamond

Sans Serif: Helvetica Neue (very dangerous typeface. Looks great and but looks like crap when used by someone with no typographic skills), FF meta, FF Scala Sans, Trade Gothic, The Sans, Zine Sans, Super Grotesk, Fago, Din.....God!...there's so many....

Prepare all your images in Photoshop or Illustrator at 300dpi in CMYK Mode and just like this images to the Image Boxes you will be creating in InDesign.

Try sketching on paper a few ideas first. Draw quickly a few different grids you could use and pick one and stick to that grid for all the project. Try having multiple columns for the text. Don't just have 1 big chunk of text on each page.

Well that's it...Hope this info can somehow help ya.
Good luck with it.....and oh yeah, you mentioned you wanted to do a great design........if can pull off a "great design" in that amount of time, please let me, my boss and everyone at the design agency I work for, how you pulled it off ;)

Snark
Nov 30, 2006, 09:27 AM
One day. Trying to use an application you don't know. Laying out an entire magazine. No design training.

Welcome to River City with a captial "T".
(Google can explain that to you...) :D

I'd say your best bet, especially since it's an artsy type magazine, is to go grunge. Articles all higgledy piggledy, turned this way and that. Look for some distressed shareware typefaces; distressed typewriter fonts might be the best compromise between grunge and readability. Maybe scan in a bunch of random ("found" is the arty word for it) crumpled up, dirty sheets of paper and stuff and use those as background for your type.

The grunge thing has become rather played out, but you can still get away with it. You'll get to break lots of time consuming rules that you may not be aware of anyway. You can get away with less than top of the line reproduction. It'll be easier to layout since it's more or less "random" anyway. People usually like the gimmicky elements like the scanned, beat-up elements and will tend to be less picky about other flaws.

By the time the next issue rolls around, you'll have had a chance to run through a few InDesign tutorials and, if you want, you can start to transition into something else by telling people each issue has a different design theme (Start gassing on about 'A constantly shifting design aesthetic fueled by the ebb and flow of the contemporary social dynamic, blah, blah, blah...' Whoever it is will run away and never ask you about it again.). :p

Snark