Sneak Peek: The Ebony Redesign
At the end of 2010 I was presented the opportunity to become the CD at Ebony magazine in Chicago. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to help redefine an American institution. We immediately set about the task of redesigning the iconic brand that was launched over 65 years ago for a new generation of readers. With a new editorial team in place, we started to rebuild the magazine piece by piece, starting with the logo:
The new Ebony logo is an evolution of the magazine's original logo. I don't think it's ever been redesigned other than it becoming larger a few years ago. We wanted to pay respect to the legacy of the brand, so instead of starting from scratch, we took the original, cleaned it up, and began to change it into something more modern and elegant. We added contrast to the characters and shortened the height in order to work better on the cover.
Our first cover of the "new era" is the Comedy Issue featuring Chris Rock, Mo'nique, and Steve Harvey. Photograph by Mark Mann.
The new Ebony, of course, features new editorial. The FOB has been expanded to included new departments including The Radar, Style, Elevate, Achieve, Connect, and Live. We also added all new fonts: Brunel (serif) and a custom slab from Commercial Type, and Founders Grotesk and Founders Grotesk Condensed (sans) from Klim. There's a lot more information and extra content now, but everything has been cleaned up and organized making it easier for the reader to get in and out of each page. Here are a few samples:
Illustration by Josue Evilla
Photograph by Rayon Richards
Photographs by Ken Kochey
The feature well has been revamped as well. We opened up the magazine to take advantage of the amazing original and archival photography.
Photographs by Dudley M. Brooks
We also are introducing some illustration into the mix. Shown here is a piece done by one of my favorites, Brian Stauffer.
There's a lot more to see, but I don't want to give it all away here. Pick up a copy. This is just the beginning, so keep an eye out for Ebony.
Special thanks to the Ebony team:
Lynnette Galloway, Associate Art Director:
Rodney Parker, Designer
Dudley M. Brooks, Senior Photo Editor