Branding, Design and
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In addition, Attiliis authors and teaches The Creative Process For Communications For Branding For The Rest Of Us.
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magazine creative direction
 

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irst purpose, then comes writing style and design. That's the way an editor and a creative director must approach development of a new magazine. Publications that accurately anticipate and supply content that is in demand by their target audience serve the right purpose. With input from the publisher, research, selection of the stories that will work best in each issue and management of the entire piece is an editor's job.
The job of creative direction is to consider and oversee how a magazine looks and reads. Study of a thorough audience description will begin suggesting both visual and writing directions. Add a broad review of the magazine's intended focus and the creative director will have sufficient insight to specifically direct style and mood.
Here is where the job can become difficult, even controversial. Suppose, we learn that audience's favorite typeface is unreadable. In addition, their fondness for unrelated decoration is disruptive. Lines, doodads, initial caps and textures, all in combination with each other totally dominate their favorite publications. Eventhough the desired content has become hard to find. What to do?
Remember, successful creative direction recognizes what is, not what should be. In such a situation, the right course is to tame the ugly beast, not shoot it. That is, to make what the audience likes even better. With an art director and designer who fully understand the dilemma, poor typefaces can be made more streamlined with spacing adjustments, better looking with a weight change and faster to read by refining the font's proportions. Other elements that clearly impede communication can be sized down and toned back. Soon, the content will be much more prominent without hurting the audience's feelings about style. In fact, what will result is an improved but unique look, the likes of which have never ever been seen in another book.
 

ao3.jpgsample

Clearly define the art director's horizon.

The sky is not the limit for most magazines. However, there can be a rather expansive horizon available to fill with all manner of helpful and meaningful visual delights. The better an art director understands the intended mood, style and available resources, the more likely a publication can satisfy its audience's expectations.
It all comes down to how well we perform and pass on specific creative thinking from one level to another. A common mistake is to deliver partial direction in the name of allowing creativity to flourish. Many confuse completing one's own responsibility with inhibiting the next team member by providing so much information that their creativity will be blocked.
There's an old saying that asserts, half measures avail us nothing. I'll add that in the periodical business, there's more than enough need for creative problem solving to go around. Even if we each keep exclusively busy with our own designated function. And certainly, when a promising thought about anything occurs to anyone, it should be shared and considered for potential merit.
This sample is a direct descendant of format notes made very early in the process. Complete with ideas about available picture sources, lavish photo montages, custom designed headlines for feature articles and a writing style that includes double entendre were all to be included. With a cruiseliner named "Grandeur", this resulting spread's answer to the original creative direction couldn't be grander.


Creative functions:
Creative direction, art direction, design and photo montage*

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*Creative functions refers to the kind of work performed on each sample by Andy Attiliis.

All information found in this portfolio should be considered individual views based on the work experience of Andy Attiliis.
Copyright 2001 Andy Attiliis




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