Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Discussion Point - Dominique

Question: How has use of visual hierarchy and grid evolved with the emergence of digital technologies over the traditions qualities and potential constraints inherent in letterpress? Find 2 examples to compare and contrast. 

Digital technologies have done nothing but expand our horizons; from what would have taken weeks to produce a page of words it now takes minutes. Visual hierarchies and the grid play an essential role in design and today's interaction with publication. Visualisations such as these have become so essential for today's society who have become so reliant on images that it is often the first thing we analyse before content.

“Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” a well known phrase and something we all, regardless of what we say, we do. Visual heirarchy plays a part in this and it’s what attracts us to engaging more with the publication. This is often seen in various magazines who thrive on maintaing a particular layout throughout their publications. 

With the introduction of programs such as Photoshop and a growing interest in photography, visual hierarchy as well as the use of the grid have had to learn to adapt.

This can be seen through the transition seen in ELLE magazine. 

Today, publications have access to a number of art directors, graphic designers and publishing technologies that enable them to create, redesign, reinvent new ways to grid their images and content. In ELLE magazine, regardless of the country of publication, there seems to always be a photograph or two in every article. Grids would have had to change to adapt to the growing interest photography, has brought to its audience (and considering it's a fashion magazine, the grid is even more important). 

Visual hierarchy between the issues in 2013 to the 1986 issue has also seen a change. With photoshop and other design tools we see more scaling and more emphasis; there was only so much editors could do with a portrait in terms of editing and scaling back in the 1980s, but today there seems to be a range of possibilities; in today's issues we notice a minimal theme for the front cover; the range of different sized fonts to provide emphasis on information and content now allow for a more playful experience for the reader. Unlike in the 1980s where the technologies then were quite limited and could only play with the alignment and so forth.

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