Progressing on from my initial ideas, I have now gone on to develop my ideas.
I began with working out the size and orientation of the document. I decided to have it portrait and the size I have selected is 432mm x 279mm – this size is equivalent to the American paper size titled; Tabloid. It is widely used for American newspapers and for that reason, I thought that it was rather fitting based on my chosen article.
I have started to play with this layout and placed the text across all three spreads. I am working on a six column grid. I decided to change the title of the article to make it a bit different and to try and make it more relatable, I therefore think that ‘The Falsehood of Our Time’ works well in making it contemporary and not obvious that it’s about Trump.
Looking at the spreads so far I think that the black page in the second spread works well because it helps to break up the pace and also helps to emphasise the call out. I like the repetitive nature of the call out on the final spread but I think that it can be pushed further with it coming off the page perhaps? There is a lot of work needed on the type setting, therefore I will try different point sizes, fonts and placements to see what works best.
After playing around, I printed three sets of spreads with each set having been altered in multiple ways. I decided to use Calibri for the body copy and Britannic Bold for the titles and call outs. After printing the spreads I felt that having three columns for the body copy was far too narrow and awkward to read. I also thought that point size 9 was too small for the size of the document. I then changed to two columns and point size 11, which I thought was too big, I then changed it to point size 10 – keeping the two columns of text – and I thought that worked the strongest. Along with that I think the call out on the final spreads works much stronger with it going off the page as it doesn’t feel as constrained. I also blacked out part of the call out on the second spread to really try and emphasise what the words are saying. I do think it’s strengthened it, but until I get the image on the opposite page, I can’t see how impactful it is.
I now need to work on my imagery for the article to see how it will work alongside the text – I will then be able to work on the design.
For my images I was influenced by the mixed media pieces I had researched; including David Carson’s type work. I wanted to try and create a confused feeling with quotes hidden in the piece for people to try and work at reading. I want it to emulate the confusion that Trump manages to create with his constant allegations and statements.
These are the original paintings I created. I am pleased with the outcomes and I think that these can be worked at to create statement pieces. One key strength I find with these is the texture they provide. I prefer the paintings with the hints of blue and red because they help to create a link to America. They feel gritty and chaotic. My personal favourite is the bottom right painting because it has a good contrast between light and dark, just enough hint of colour and you can really gain a sense of the texture.
Here I added some of Trump’s most well known quotes, whereby I played with the type to try and make it difficult for the reader to read. I think that they have worked very successfully with some elements being easier to see than others. I do think that the second image works better than the first due to the placement of the quotes and also the way the paint bleeds off the page – it feels more natural and authentic.
This is the result of adding the image to the spread.
I think that it works with the article itself as I think it takes an implicit approach. However, I do feel like there’s something missing but I can’t put my finger on it.
Another problem is that there aren’t any paint strokes on any of the other spreads – which means they all feel very separate. I will go and work on the paintings I have made and try to insert them into the other spreads.
I think that the addition of the paint on the third spread works well as it helps to emphasise the distracted feeling, which as a result emphasises the call out used. However, I don’t think that the brush stroke on the first spread works where it is. I am having a lot of trouble with the first spread because I can see that there is too much negative space – but I don’t know what to place there. It still feels very separate to the rest of the magazine.
Tutorial with David:
I did a tile print of my spreads to date and took them to show David for feedback.
He agreed that there was too much negative space on the first spread and suggested celebrating the title more, perhaps trying to circle or cross out certain words. He also said that he did not like the typeface used for the titles as it felt too dated for the piece. He liked that I had changed the brush stroke to go behind the call out to make it stand out. He gave positive remarks about the image on the second spread but suggested I move the callout from the black page and embed it into the image. He thought that the two pages felt quite separate and to try and join them together somehow. In regards to the final spread he liked the repetitive nature of the call out but suggested I make it bigger and more in the reader’s face by having the word ‘distractions’ going across the page.
I am pleased with the feedback because he has given me some ideas of how to strengthen the work. I agree with the majority of the comments, with one or two causing me a little concern simply because I can’t quite see how it will work. Either way I will give it a go and see the outcome.
Here is the first set of amendments made based on David’s feedback. I do like the addition of the paint on the first page – it definitely breaks up the negative space more and connects it to the other spreads, creating a coherency. I do think that the title is a little difficult to read and I don’t know if I like the strikethrough – I will go back and play with it further. With the second spread I don’t think that the call out works with it overlaying the two pages. I think it becomes too illegible and just looks awkward. With the final spread, I like the addition of the word ‘distraction’ – especially in the colour red. However, the word does get lost amongst the other call outs.
I went back to play on the second spread because I really wasn’t happy with it. I have now moved the callout fully on to the page with the image and have added another callout to the adjacent page. I think this composition works much better because the brush stroke on the black page helps to join the two pages together. It also helps to break up some of the negative space, because I think that there was a little too much without the callout being there.
Here is the change I made to the title on the first spread. I changed the typeface to white and physically drew over it rather than just using the strikethrough. I think that this works better because the type is much more legible and the hand drawn effect works in relation to the painted pieces throughout. It gives it a more organic feel. I have also changed the typeface, which in reflection, was a good decision. Now that I have changed it, I can see the point that David was making. I think that this is much more contemporary and also quite authoritative compared to my previous choice.
When I presented these changes for formative feedback, the feedback I received was mostly positive. However there were still some alterations suggested to me. One being that the paint strokes on the first double page spread felt too confined and like it had just been placed on because when comparing it with the image on the second spread, the paint bleeds off the page, making it look more natural. Another suggestion was to draw on the callout on the second spread like I did on the title in the first spread. For the final spread many said that the word ‘distractions’ was not big enough and was too difficult to read and to again try and push that further. They also suggested adding in another callout into the body copy to try and break it up a bit more.
These are the changes made to the spreads in regards to the feedback I received. In comparison to what I had previously – I do think that these immediately look stronger. I think that having the paint bleed off definitely makes it look more natural and corresponds to the other spreads better. However, I do think that the standfirst looks quite tight in the space – something David pointed out to me. I also think that the drawn on effect on the callout on the second spread fits in better with the image and also the article itself. I think that this addition works well and I wonder whether it can be added to the final spread. Although I think that enlarging the word ‘distractions’ has definitely strengthened it – I think that it could be pushed that little bit further.
The Final Spreads:
These are my final spreads. I am pleased with the overall result. I think that the addition of the circle around the word ‘distractions’ has really made it the centre focus and underpinned what the text is saying. In a way it sums up the article. I also think that the first spread has used the space more effectively, with the standfirst having more room to breathe – as well as the body copy.
Compared to where I began, I now think that all three spreads work together and do not feel so separate from one another. Although each spread is different, each use similar elements throughout in order to create a consistency. I think that the approach I have taken is not an obvious one and one would not initially relate it to Donald Trump. I like this about it because I think it makes it more interesting and the nature of the imagery pulls you in.
On 29/05 David provided feedback based on the spreads submitted. On the whole I was extremely pleased with what was said. I was complimented on numerous elements of both the design and typesetting. However, he did state that my final spread felt unresolved and that there is an awkwardness attached to it that doesn’t occur in the other spreads.
I have since reviewed my spreads alongside my feedback and I can sort of see what was meant. I think that the large ‘distractions’ is what’s causing the awkwardness – it is very large and slaps the viewer in the face, which is something that doesn’t occur in the other spreads.
To try and develop my piece from the feedback received, I changed the text in the centre to read ‘a lot of distractions’. Although it is only a small change, I do think that it has improved the layout. It is still loud, but doesn’t scream to the viewer. I think that this is a more appropriate representation of Trump. I want it to reflect his brash nature and his disregarding ways to anything he disagrees with. Personally, I don’t think that I could have done much more with this spread without overcomplicating it and overworking it. I am pleased with its outcome and the small change made. I did begin by trying to scribble over the word but that was painful to look at – it just became messy.
Here are the new set of spreads together: