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mirza's avatar

Tips for re-designing a traditional newspaper?

Asked by mirza (5029 points ) December 1st, 2007

I am working with a few friends to re-design the entire layout and content for a small town newspaper. Unfortunately it is still going to be in black and white (but we will have two color pages in the next issue). The paper has used the same layout,logo and template for the past 15 years. So any tips, ideas for re-designing a fresh look would be welcome. Also if you could point me towards some useful resources on the web that would be amazing

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5 Answers

sferik's avatar

Start with a grid layout (the number of columns is up to you). The print should be in a serif font; headlines in sans serif.

The front page, above the fold, should contain very little print. This area should be reserved for attention-grabbers, like headlines and photographs. (The Wall Street Journal does a nice job using greyscale hedcuts, rather than photographs, on their front page.)

I’d recommend buying one copy of every paper at your local newsstand and comparing them to see what works and what doesn’t. I would also warn that what looks good on your computer screen does not necessarily translate to the printed page. Make sure to print out your draft designs at full size and hold them in your hand as you would a newspaper.

voodoo's avatar

I like changing the size, personally. It presents a different physical design that can often endear a lot of people because it’s new, it’s fresh, and compelling. Hope that helps. Consider going to tabloid as opposed to a full on large spread.

Good luck! and more importantly, have fun!

sndfreQ's avatar

this may be going out on a limb but you may want to research an online format as well; at the college where I work we are considering doing this and have been researching collegepublisher.com
as a possible avenue for us; there may be something similar to this in the private sector? Just a thought.

gailcalled's avatar

Whatever changes you make, consider staying with black and white. Coloured newsprint can’t be used in stoves to start wood fires and is more polluting when recycled, in general.

weightless's avatar

Good responses. Find inspiration in Erik Speikermann’s Le Monde redesign

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