• Magazine Design

  • With this assignment, we increase the complexity of our layouts. We'll design a modular grid, type and image treatments.

How To Get An A

This is what you need to do to ace this assignment.

  • Inventory, organize and prepare provided materials to use in a type-based design.
  • Design and construct a modular grid for a multi-page publication.
  • Combine a pair of type families appropriate to set titles, pull quotes, body copy and more for a publication design.
  • Combine the use of photography and typography to compose balanced page layouts.
  • Organize provided text and images across a given number of pages to fit the content, maximize interest, use white space wisely.
  • Devise type hierarchy for a multi-page publication.
  • Design functional and decorative page elements like folios, shapes, colours and more.
  • Select, then apply context-appropriate colours along with their tints and shades to create a colour theme.
Your grade reflects the degree to which you satisfied the above criteria.
Grade Value Description
A, 80-100%, Excellent This is work that has been completed in a highly motivated manner which meets all or most of the performance criteria for the project. It is an exceptional demonstration of design skills.
B, 70-79%, Superior You have submitted work which is above average, but lacks the qualities which give it the stamp of excellence. It shows better than average design sensitivity.
C, 60-69% Satisfactory Your project is handed in on time. It has fulfilled some or all of the requirements. It lacks strong visual interest and thoughtful & imaginative resolution. The work is merely average.
D, 50-59%, Marginal This work is handed in on time, but lacks many or most of the areas that show understanding of design. It is a weak effort, which does not meet program standards.
F, 0-49%, Unsatisfactory This is work that is not handed in on time or does not satisfy the assignment criteria at all.
NHI: Not Handed In An assignment which was not received.

BrightSpace Submission Links

  1. Magazine Style Tile (PDF)
  2. Magazine WIP (PDF)
  3. Magazine Final Submission

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The Brief

To date, we’ve designed informal grids which lend themselves to single pages of content. We then designed single-column grids which are commonly found in fiction novels. Now, we’ll step up once again to the modular grid. This is the most flexible type of grid. It allows for placement of text and other types of content like images, tables of data, graphics and more.

With increased flexibility comes increased complexity. We’ll be juggling with more balls at a time, so it’s easier to drop one. That’s why we need to be methodical in our process.


Content Inventory
As a cook needs to know what ingredients they have at their disposal, we need to inventory our content.
  • Read all the text to become familiar with the content.
  • Check for typos or grammatical errors.
  • Are there lists, tables and/or other types of content?
  • Open all the images to check pixel dimensions, colour mode, image quality.
Grid Design
Now that we’re familiar with our content, we can design our page grid. This stage also includes sketching layouts based on the provided content.
Type Selection
As always, we need to choose typefaces. Here, you’re permitted two families plus an optional display/dingbat typeface. In the real world, these are the families that would be used on an on-going basis for this publication.
Type Hierarchy
Establish the hierarchy based on our selected type families and the provided content. You can work with family, size, case, weight, width, colour, italics and more.
Page Element Design
Design functional and decorative elements like folios, background shapes and colours, photo treatments, etc…
Colour Selection
Select two colours. One should be a feature colour whose properties are brighter and more saturated. This one is used to grab the reader’s attention. The second colour can be more muted and generally quieter. This one is used when you want something to be non-black, but it doesn’t need to scream at the reader. You also have access to these two colours’ tints and shades. Create a palette of swatches that you’ll actually use in your layout. The more restricted it is, the more punch your design will have.
Page Construction
The final step is to build the actual pages in InDesign. As always, this stage is more technical than creative. Use all the software tools you know to build this to be easily editable. We’re talking text styles, image styles, table styles, Parent Pages and all that good stuff.