April 20, 2008

Sun Silliness

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Some say that graphic design is basically “selling out to the man”. To these critics, I say… you’re probably right. But in the meanwhile, I’m enjoying page design.

One thing I don’t enjoy are carry pages. You know when you finish a front page article and it says “See DEBATE page 8”? Yup, page 8 is a “carry” page, since the article carries over onto it. We tend to do these pages late at night, under-caffeinated and over deadline. These pages tend to have a lot of ads on them, and fitting the articles is tough, since they have exact word counts (on the front page, articles can spill over).

With these advertisements come two golden rules of page design. The first rule is to never move or resize the advertisements. The second is to NEVER MOVE OR RESIZE THE ADVERTISEMENTS.

[img_assist|nid=30025|title=A product of the design department’s talented minds.|desc=|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]So what’s a designer to do, when random rectangles have been taken from his creative grasp and he’s forced to fit three random article leftovers onto the page snugly? Well, at a real newspaper this requires skill, and a unwavering editor to cut from the articles. At The Sun, we just tend to fill awkward empty spots with our own ads called “promos.” These do everything from advertise upcoming special content (“Be Sure to Read Eclipse Every Friday”) to reminding readers about recycling their copy of The Sun.
[img_assist|nid=30024|title=One of the real promos, featuring Design Editor, Carol Zou.|desc=|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Over the years, a few crazy promos have made their way into the newspaper. Below are three examples. Two have made it in the paper in the past, and one has not (can you guess which?). One of the real promos happens to feature our very own Design Editor, Carol!
[img_assist|nid=30026|title=Was this promo printed in The Sun?|desc=|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Look for promos of random silliness everyday in the Cornell Sun! Available now on news stands near you. How’s that for a shameless plug? As for me, it’s time to get back to designing those late night carry pages…