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Cover of the Day: Better Homes and Gardens November 2014

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Welcome to SPD's Cover of the Day, a portfolio of brilliant magazine and newspaper covers from around the world.

Better Homes and Gardens  November 2014

Creative Director: Michael D. Belknap
Senior Design Director: Shelley Caldwell
Photography Coordinator: Holly Pruett
Photographer: Andy Lyons
Food Stylist: Greg Luna
Prop Stylist: Sue Mitchell

Want to submit your cover to be considered for our Cover of the Day? Send us a jpeg of your cover with credit info to SPDsubmissions@gmail.com
Inside the New ESPN Analytics Issue

Inside the New ESPN Analytics Issue

SPD recently got a peek of the new ESPN Analytics Issue, out on newsstands now.   Art director Keir Novesky gives us some insight into putting together this info packed issue. 

Developing a cohesive look and feel for themed issues always presents challenges. It was particularly difficult for our third annual Analytics issue, which focuses on what Nate Silver describes in his introductory essay as "dark matter": the invisible stuff of the sports universe--toughness, potential, chemistry and more--once thought to be unquantifiable. 


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Washington Life Magazine goes to the ballet

Washington Life Magazine goes to the ballet

Washington Life Magazine previews the Washington Ballet's new season with this story in their April issue. 



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Good Cents

Good Cents

The Lincoln penny has a new verso, only the third since its introduction in 1909. I made a line-up of our legal tender and was surprised by what I saw; a brief history of the American economy as writ by the U.S. Mint.
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Milton Glaser Votes

Milton Glaser Votes

Andrea Bernstein just interviewed Milton Glaser on The Brian Lehrer Show (listen here). Her guests included Julie Lasky and others discussing the design of the new voting ballots. Milton Glaser disliked the new ballot design so much, he offered to redesign it for the Board of Elections. What do you think?  
Life at Hollywoodlife.com

Life at Hollywoodlife.com

Coverage of this weekend's Oscars will generate a multitude of digital media. Bonnie Fuller's  Holllywoodlife.com is a newcomer to online celebrity news , launched November 2009. They will be generating their own fair share of buzz. After the jump Wilbert Gutierrez, the Creative Director, talks about life at Hollywoodlife. 
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Behind The Design: Ford's Theater

While producing the 2009 December issue of W, a peek at an afternoon's worth of paste board madness for an opening spread featuring Tom Ford and Colin Firth photographed by Nigel Parry. Video after the jump...… MORE
The Newsweek Redesign: Hit or Miss?

The Newsweek Redesign: Hit or Miss?

We all know what the process is like to get out a massive redesign. The meetings... The designs... Presentations... Focus groups... More designs... Launch. 

Well, it has been four issues for the Newsweek redesign by Number 17--a good number of issues to get your sea-legs. 

What do you think?
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Back To The

Back To The "Drew"ing Board...

In between all the crazy preparation for Gala 44 (and trust me when I say you WON'T want to miss this one,) as a recurring item (and due to popular demand,) here is one of my latest design process vids of an opening spread featuring Drew Barrymore photographed by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott from the April 2009 issue of W magazine. Looking back, I had an idea of where the design would end up, but wanted to explore a few options first.
Video after the jump.

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Design Challenges at Google

Design Challenges at Google

In this month's issue of WIRED, I was lucky enough to write a little piece about constraint in design and used the Google homepage as an example. Today, I came across a really great post from Doug Bowman, visual design lead at Google. Today is his last day with the company, and he explains some of the challenges he faced working in an engineer-focused culture, including this little gem:
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Say It Loud.

Say It Loud.

As some of you may had noticed, back in September I'd posted an animation displaying my design process based on a feature about Anne Hathaway. Below is another short vid documenting my typographic design movements for a fashion story photographed by David Sims in the current (February 2009) issue of W featuring French soprano, Alexandra Deshorties as she channels the gamut of extreme human emotions that are represented in opera.

Video after the jump...

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SPD PUB 43 Design Annual Has (Almost) Arrived

SPD PUB 43 Design Annual Has (Almost) Arrived

Yep, that's right. The hotly anticipated SPD PUB 43 Design Annual will be reaching our shores from Singapore come mid/late December 2008! As it's chock full of the most innovative, exciting editorial design work from 2007--including the Magazine of the Year Winners and the Members' Choice winner--you will definitely want to get your hands on this one as soon as it hits the SPD offices!

Stay tuned to http://spd.org in the coming weeks for more information on how to get your copy, along with an in-depth Q&A from this year's annual designers, Weapon of Choice (Tom Brown and Todd Albertson), as they discuss their concepts behind the design, and why debossing isn't really as easy as it looks.
Inspiration: Télérama

Inspiration: Télérama

If you've read my recent blogs, you've probably figured out by now that I'm not only a bit of a francophile, but also a huge Avedon fan, so forgive moi, but here comes just one more... On my recent trip to Paris, I also caught the very last day of the Avedon show at the Galerie de Jeu De Paume. Richard Avedon: Photographs 1946-2004 was an awe-inspiring retrospective that showed the photographer's span of work from the beginning of his career to his death in 2004, from his fashion photographs for Vogue and Harper's Bazaar, to his portraits in the American West. In case you missed this exhibition, you can check out most of the work shown in his series of books at amazon.com. But since sadly, the Avedon show is over, so I wanted to share what I happened to pick up when as I was leaving the gallery, a little French magazine called Télérama.

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Under Pressure

Under Pressure

Regardless of having great content and amazing imagery to design with here at W, it often takes quite a number of typographical explorations to create the right solution for a layout (especially when I'm thrown a couple of curve balls as editors rewrite their headlines!)

Check out the short video below documenting a sample of my design evolution for a profile story about Anne Hathaway, photographed by Mario Sorrenti and featured in the current, October issue of W.

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Nothing But a Ballpoint Pen

Nothing But a Ballpoint Pen

For the September issue of Los Angeles, art director Joe Kimberling collaborated with illustrator and type designer Marian Bantjes to create the cover. The solution, done solely with a blue ballpoint pen, is a notebook covered with doodles inspired by a creative, yet distracted high school student. As Marian says on the contributors page "I did everything but the bar code". Check out more of her amazing work here.
For People Who Give A Damn! Some GOOD news

For People Who Give A Damn! Some GOOD news

Were you handed something different while paying $5 for that Mint Mocha Chip Frappuccino blended coffee drink this morning?  I'm not talking about someone's wailing kid, I'm talking about the premiere of GOOD SHEET.

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Alternative Newsweekly Design

Alternative Newsweekly Design

I recently gave a presentation to the annual convention of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies. There's some great design being done at those papers, ranging from super slick to down and dirty, almost all of it being done fast and cheap.

One of the best alt weekly designs is the Las Vegas Weekly. Their art director, Benjamen Purvis, uses a lot of design and typographic tricks to create a visual version of the noise, color and neon of Las Vegas, with plenty of 3D type and bold photos and graphics. It's wonderful stuff, super-sophisticated, in the design world of Esquire or Los Angeles, as good or better than what many national magazines with much bigger budgets are doing.


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Dwell Redesign Interview with Kyle Blue

Dwell Redesign Interview with Kyle Blue

This week Chad Kloepfer from the Walker Art Center published an interview with Dwell Design Director Kyle Blue on their design blog. Chad talks with Kyle about the guiding principles, rejected covers, font choices and more that went into the current magazine.

A good Friday afternoon read.
New Favorite Magazine: FOAM

New Favorite Magazine: FOAM

I'm afraid I'm a little late to the party on this one but Foam: International Photography Magazine based out of Amsterdam is simply amazing.  I was lucky enough to come across it at the NY Photo Fesitval in Dumbo--directed to it by my pal Ryan Mesina in the Real Simple Photo Department.  We were both instant fans.  Each specially themed issue feels like you've stumbled into a little photo gallery on a city street that is filled with gems the likes of which you haven't seen before.  … MORE

"The Stranger" Cover Archive

One of my favorite online publication site trends is the creation of cover and issue archives. So I was very happy to find that the complete collection of Entertainment Weekly covers is now available on their website as part of a complete issue archive. There are over 1,000 covers, art directed by Michael Grossman, John Korpics, Geraldine Hessler, current DD Brian Anstey, and even a couple years art directed by myself. This is very cool stuff, some amazing photography, and it's fun to see how the EW cover has evolved over the years. It's also a wonderful snapshot of popular culture since 1991.
Even better, The Stranger, the alternative weekly based in Seattle, has posted the last 10 years of their covers. The Stranger covers are like the cool punk version of The New Yorker, with illustrations, photographs and graphic design that are stand-alone visual statements, with lots of attitude and passion. Like The New Yorker, The Stranger covers are the visual voice of the publication, a dialogue each week between the paper and its readers.
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Destination: DestinAsian

Destination: DestinAsian

I was first introduced to DestinAsian magazine about four years ago, when I was with a  photographer friend in Bali, and we had dinner with the editor-in-chief, Christopher Hill. Based in Jakarta, the Asian luxury travel and lifestyle magazine is quite hard to find in the States unless you go to a really on-top-of-it international magazine store, but it is all the rage in big cities across Asia, and well-represented in the SPD design annual.
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Designer's Block

Designer's Block

We know visual stimulant is all around us but, when I have designer's block I sometimes need immediate optical motivation for concepts/type treatment. When there's no time to run out to the book store or my fav eccentric magazine stand, I turn to the wondrous world wide web.
So when I'm often asked "where do you get your quick inspiration from online?," one particular design studio's site that comes to mind is www.fwis.com. Not only is their gallery chock full of motivational imagery, but they also feature a blog called "Covers."

Book cover art is featured and updated several times a week and open for commenting. I like to think of it as a virtual wall meeting where random viewers can critique the art director's motive. Check it out, and let me know about your own favorite "quick fix."

Be Careful What You Wish For

Be Careful What You Wish For

Michael Walsh, the art director of the Visual Arts Press, asked me to do the next SVA subway poster this past January. I was completely blown away, and of course, said I'd be honored. The next day, the lovely Ric Grefe from AIGA called to tell me I was getting the 2008 Lifetime Achievement Medal. I assumed that before the end of that glorious week, I'd get clocked by a car on my bike ride home and would linger in a coma that would last beyond both the poster deadline and the big AIGA gala in September. Surprisingly, I've been spared (though I'm still waiting for an anvil to fall on my head). … MORE
Inspiration: Milk Magazine

Inspiration: Milk Magazine

Since Fabien Baron left French Vogue to come back to America, you might think you need to bid the city of lights "adieu", but don't give up on France until you've checked out Milk magazine. I came across this French mag for kids' fashion (le magazine de mode enfantine) when I was in Paris a few years ago, at a tiny newsstand near my hotel.… MORE

Spines of Slovenia

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The payoff from a recent speaking trip to Ljubljana for EMZIN magazine: Some of the most beautifully designed book spines I've ever seen, tucked away on the shelves of the town's antiquarian bookshop. WOW.


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