Sunday, September 15, 2013

Anchorage Press cover: "Cook Inlet"

"Blowing Bubbles" test excerpt

Yet another in a recent series of Anchorage Press covers (previously "Dumpster Diver" and "Empty Nest"). The above image was a test panel for experimenting with color, and made for a spiffy Facebook cover photo also - the design might migrate into a bumpersticker I'm thinking...

Quick & dirty series of rough sketches: actually there's only two basic concepts, the first five being basically rearrangements of different species of Cook Inlet animals, with the last a specific homage to the iconic aerial imagery of a particular subpopulation pod of beluga whales. I abandoned another ideas when it occurred to me that walrus aren't normally subarctic, aside from the occasional vagrant.

The medley won out, with some great editorial input along the way: one concern raised was the lack of anything "visual above the fold," meaning the composition made for a boring cover when one considers that the newspaper is always face up folded in half on stands and stacks. Prompting curiosity should be a major function of the art so as to encourage the issue being both picked up and opened. And so the gang was situated in such a way that many of the critters and their respective eyeballs would appear to be looking downward at something below the fold.

Another aspect that was pointed out was how the composition seemed a bit too crowded, so half the animals ultimately were deleted. Good advice, and amusing to eat the words I always admonish students in the studio with: keep it simple! Last minute remixes are always easier with it being a mostly digitally assembled image: keylines drawn in Sharpie, scanned, converted to vector, and then colored in Photoshop after juggling and tweaking the final layout.
Full article here + the digital paper here.

As usual the graphic artist who did the layout on the cover did a great job incorporating text with the  composition + matching a font that dovetails with the image. Also it makes for something fun to cut & paste amongst other pages:

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