Friday, November 25, 2005
It's alive! Cover tips off new type
The Spokesman-Review saw its first use of the new Chronicle typography with this cover of the college basketball special section, published on Thanksgiving day. Kudos to Bridget Sawicki, who made the amazing illustration of Gonzaga's Adam Morrison, and Ralph Walter, who designed the cover and began establishing the archicture for all S-R special sections.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Got game? SND needs you
Wanted: Web pioneer
The Society for News Design has just completed a redesign of its web site, and now we need to appoint an editor for snd.org. Interested? See the posting over in the SND job bank and contact Matt Mansfield, who serves as SND's publications director, if you want to learn more about this volunteer position.
You can help shape the visual journalism dialogue, do your work from virtually anywhere in the world, and collaborate with the top-notch editors of SND's other publications, Design and Update, to present ideas from the best minds in the industry.
Don't delay, contact Matt now so you can be ready for the busy part of 2006 when the annual competition kicks into high gear as we cover the judging from Syracuse!
Thursday, November 10, 2005
7&7: Two new weekend covers
Here are Bridget Sawicki's first couple of covers for the new 7 section design in Spokane. The section, still evolving, tries to use conceptual illustration for its cover every week that incorporates the circular 7 logo into the idea. The design does, however, have a placement for the 7 that's more traditional when the stretch to make it work becomes too tough. Sawicki handles the illustration and design every week.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Listen up: Check out Merc podcasts
The Mercury News has been podcasting its award-winning technology coverage for a few months now. It's worth checking out these short programs. (We would say that, right?) Download "Inside Silicon Valley" under the podcast area on iTunes or from our web site. Jon Fortt hosts the shows, which help listeners keep up with Apple, Adobe, Intel, Cisco and other top-flight tech companies. We also cover gaming with Merc experts Dean Takahashi and Mike Antonucci, and have just begun testing our mettle with video podcasts from Merc photographers.
Monday, November 07, 2005
S-R prototypes will get the reader test
Changes in The Spokesman-Review go in front of their most important audience next week: local readers in Washington and Idaho.
The reader meetings will be the first chance that news consumers have to evaluate the paper's new size, typography and changes in content (see above left for the current paper and right for the changed paper). The examples above are from just one prototype readers will see and the front page represented above is from a major breaking news day; routine news days will also be put in front of readers.
The central san-serif headline font is Guggenheim Condensed, created by Jonathan Hoefler for the Guggenheim museums. The secondary sans is Whitney, used everywhere in the weekend magazine, 7, and displayed here as an accent font in promotion, graphics and other small-type usages. The main serif face is Chronicle Condensed, a brand-new H&F-J face with much versatility. The paper makes wide use of all families.
MG partner Scott Goldman will be in Spokane to assist Geoff Pinnock with the focus groups from Nov. 14-16. Goldman and Pinnock will be asking readers to score the paper on ease of use, readability and innovation, with MG using the research to drive final choices for implementation.
Matt Mansfield and Denise Reagan will visit Spokane Nov. 30-Dec. 3 for another round of revisions on the overall newspaper, as well as a check-in on the work already in print in the new Home and 7 sections, which debuted their redesigns ahead of the overall newspaper.
All current prototype pages were designed by Pinnock and Ralph Walter, the Spokesman's assistant design director, in consultation with MG's creative team. This prototype, the third such iteration, was the first time that S-R designers began working with the paper's new typography, story forms and the change to a 50-inch web size.
(Complete aside: Ralph's brother, Jess Walter, may be the best person to give you a glimpse of life in the Inland Northwest. Jess has written several books, most set in Spokane. "Land of the Blind" and "Citizen Vince" are both richly textured novels worth reading.)
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Mercury News chosen as learning newsroom
We're pleased to report that the San Jose Mercury News been selected as one of 10 newsrooms in the nation to be a pilot site for the expansion of the API/ASNE Learning Newsroom training program.
Matt Mansfield and Jonathon Berlin of MG will be the senior Mercury News leaders working with Learning Newsroom project director Vickey Williams to develop a learning plan that will bring organizational development experts into the newsroom.
Experts will coach newsroom leaders to be better communicators, set priorities, encourage innovation and to gain more staff involvement in setting strategy over the next 18 months.
The program will launch at the Merc in early 2006, involving more than one-third of the newsroom staff initially, and if it is successful we will continue the momentum and extend the training eventually to the entire newsroom.
Our partners at API and ASNE said it was a bit of a gamble to take this program to a newsroom in transformation. But they were impressed by the interest in the program shown by Merc staff and the commitment of newsroom leadership to support the process. We are confident our experience will prove it was the right decision.