Tag Archives: news

Londoners (or anybody willing to travel) – Please support our second year BA(Hons) Press & Editorial Photography exhibition The Long & Short of it. Exhibiting at Calumet, London, 24th March – 17th April. Private View 24th March. Lots of up-and-coming talent, plus free food and booze. I shall be there with canapés…

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Potential images for editorial use in the story of Paul Cooper, a weekend-Dad and his son Joshua.

Potential images for editorial use in the story of Paul Cooper, a weekend-Dad and his son Joshua.

I don’t intend to use all images but I think there are a few different variations that would work, so at this stage I don’t want to rule any out.

My step step is going to be to establish which of these images I could possibly use for the establishing page, whether it be one picture or more.

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Squeeze in those pictures!


Komma 11 on Behance

Komma 11 is a student editorial that focuses on editorial design, print design and typography. Each feature contains different styles of work, including documentary, graphic design and portraiture and so the design is varied but maintains it’s identity.

On this particular page, I like how they have managed to use six pictures on the page without the page looking crowded. There is still room to breathe by restricting the images neatly to the bottom two-thirds of the page.



Origen Newspaper on Behance

This love the length to this design although this is a format I am not working on. I think it could potentially still work though on an A3. Again, I think the space at the top where they have placed the headline is necessary to not crowd the already picture-full page.

The two simple columns, one on each page works nicely and gives the editorial more of a newspaper feel to it, as does the type face they have used. Still, the design looks modern and artistic and suits the photography well.


So potentially I could use 6 or maybe even 7 pictures on the second page of the double page spread, if I felt there was this amount to tell a story. I might decide that a tighter edit is preferable for the editorial, but I know that having discussed a possible edit for ‘The 5 Picture Story’ brief in PEP140, we talked about how it was a shame it’s not an edit of 10 or 12…

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New establishing spread design

Screen shot 2014-05-19 at 14.12.00


I wanted to do a design that included a full bleed on one side. This means that the picture has to be enlarged, if you are to stick to a design that is fairly conventional and ‘belongs’ on the page.

With a narrower column for text, I thought I’d tip the headline on it’s side and match the headline’s height to the picture, once again stretching the word like it’s meaning.

The text then looked odd as a block, but by stretching it vertically, it looks more as though it belongs.

Although I like the title on its side like this, there is something about this design that reminds me of a fashion magazine. Possibly the headline in capitals? I can’t quite put my finger on it but I don’t think it necessarily reflects the story as well as the previous designs.

I’ve also played around with the title of the editorial and the page numbers again and once again I think this works just as well as the other designs.

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Alternative establishing spreads for Longevity


I’ve created a few different versions of this layout, with fairly minor changes, such as the headline font and position of the title/issue/page number of the magazine.


I think the position of the title/issue works on both layouts and what I choose would be a matter of personal preference. Placing the text across the top might be a slightly more traditional position and highlights where the centre of the pages are, which you might say works less well for a layout like this where the images and text aren’t placed centrally in relation to the page but it doesn’t bother me.



Placing the title of the editorial, issue number and title of the article together like this condenses the information more and works with the idea of a minimalist design.

I’ve also made the establishing image smaller so that it doesn’t bleed over to both pages. This design is more reminiscent of Aesthetica magazine. The benefit is that the picture does not get obstructed by the gutter, although the photograph does not contain important detail at the centre of the spread, so is ideal for a design that is spread across both pages.



I think the content is strong enough on the establishing page that the size of the picture is not important. All my designs give the same impression of what kind of magazine you are reading and what kind of story/photography you are viewing.

Both fonts work well but I do have a preference to Futura for the headline, because it looks beautiful as a large font and because the editorial becomes less of a copy of Aesthetica, which uses a font very similar to Palatino, as does Pig House Pictures.

I also think it makes sense for the headlines to be the same font family as the editorial titles, and for the main body text to be a more traditional serif font like Palatino or Times New Roman.

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I’ve chosen ‘Longevity’ as my headline for the story but I went through a few different ideas before I got there.

The story started off very objectively with the headline ‘Mortlake Road’, which is where they live in Richmond. I’d chosen this because the story seemed to me to be as much about the history of the house as it is about Hugh and Jean themselves. Despite this, the headline never really caught my attention as a headline should.

  • Mortlake Road
  • History’s end
  • Old love
  • Switching the light’s off
  • Fading Away
  • Behind closed doors
  • Long goodbye
  • Last generation
  • Generation’s end

I like the simplicity of Longevity and how it can be read positively and negatively, which I think reflects the story. Although Hugh and Jean’s current situation is sad, their long life together and their strength is something we can all admire and hope for ourselves.

I also like the elegance of the word and think it is suited to the sensitivity of the story.

Because it is a word that describes the length of something, I am able to play with how the word sits on the page. By using tracking on it, I can emphasise the words meaning through design elements, which I have done in my initial layout.


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First draft of double page spread

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The content

As discussed on March 1st in the article ‘Choosing a Story’, I think of the five images selected for the story, Jean on the stairs has to be the establisher. It’s a visually striking picture that entices you into the story. The second most important is Hugh and Jean on the bed as it introduces you to the couple and their bedridden existence. The other three are important in terms of telling the story but are more detailed shots, which are talked about within the text.

I wrote this story back in December for an issue of 205dpi magazine and have found myself editing it slightly, partly through criticism of my own writing but partly because I hadn’t really explained who I was in relation to Hugh and Jean and hadn’t made it clear enough what was going on in some of the detail pictures.

Originally, this story was called ‘Mortlake Road’ but I have tried to be less objective and more suggestive and elegant with my choice of word(s) for the headline. ‘Longevity’ seems the perfect description for Hugh and Jean and I have tried to use design to mimic this by loosening the tracking.

I will need to play around with Figures. I can either direct you to the pictures within the main body of text ie (top left), or I can create a design element for them. The space on the far right could work well for this although I’m enjoying the negative space I’ve created in that column.


The design

This design is based on a selection of elements I found myself being particularly drawn to during my editorial design research. My aim is to produce two double page spreads that borrows these elements to create a clear vision for my work that can communicate the story clearly whilst looking attractive on the page.

You can see here that I like the design to be simple and minimalist with plenty of negative space, simple type faces and clean shapes. Whilst designing, I found myself being very aware not to create a design element purely for the sake of design, but to make sure that it had a benefit to the story or to the editorial itself. For example, I have named the editorial ‘Documentary Photography’ (invention clearly not my forte), and have given it an Issue number. This is something you would find in any art editorial and allows me to think about design. However, when I started placing elements such as lines around the design, most of the time I deleted them as they seemed to have no purpose and distracted me from the content.

As I seemed to be drawn to the establishing image leaking itself across onto two pages, I have started with this design. It gives a clear area for the headline and standfirst, it looks crisp and I don’t have to worry about the issues faced when placing text over the top of an image.

The lines around the quote I think help the quote stand out and are therefore justified. They also look aesthetically pleasing as the lines match the thickness of the crisp capitals of Futura Light.

Having assessed editorials to look at how many typefaces they use on average, I found that generally editorials use no more than three typefaces. Often, they use two but will use a few various typefaces from their font family, as opposed to using different fonts altogether. In my design, I have used three fonts: Lixus Libertine and Minion Pro for the main body text and standfirst and Futura for the other elements.

I particularly wanted to link the headline to the title of the editorial, page numbers, website etc because it tightens up the editorial gives it a stronger brand (were it real) and I used Futura for this because it seems to be a versatile font that is crisp and modern but classic at the same time.

A note of Futura:

Following the Bauhaus design philosophy, German type designer Paul Renner first created Futura between 1924 and 1926. Although Renner was not a member of the Bauhaus, he shared many of its views, believing that a modern typeface should express modern models rather than be a rivial of a previous design. Futura was commercially released in 1927, commissioned by the Bauer type foundry.

While designing Futura, Renner avoided creating any non-essential elements, making use of basic geometric proportions with no serifs or frills. Futura’s crisp, clean forms reflect the appearance of efficiency and forwardness even today.


It is interesting to see that I seem to have chosen a typeface that mimics what I’ve been saying about avoiding ‘non-essential elements’ with its efficient, crisp appearance.



Next I will be showing various versions of this design. The changes are subtle but nevertheless important!


All images © Amy Romer 2014

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Looking at layouts: Pig House Pictures



 Pig House Pictures Magazine is released quarterly. It is a platform for contemporary images with purpose and showcases the diversity of photography coming out of Falmouth University.

What I really like about Pig House Pictures, is its attention to detail when it comes to continuity without making each story visually the same.

There is always a neat left margin whether there be text or image running down it. The margin contains the name of the editorial and the title of the story, with the page number above. Simple details like this help brand a magazine.

Pig House Pictures tend to use the same fonts for all stories but will change the way that the font looks. In these examples tracking and the use of capitals has been applied to the headlines. This is a good way to change the dynamics of a story, whilst maintaining a visual signature within the editorial.


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I like the headline on its side in this establishing page. Not only does it look good but there is purpose behind it. The story is obviously to do with construction and so the letters arranged vertically mimics this idea. By using strong capitals and tightening the tracking, the words become dense, as the headline also describes.

This is a great example of how design and language can lend themselves to one another .



Screen shot 2014-02-24 at 21.47.22

I think for an establishing page, this is the weakest in my opinion. That is not to say it is weak, but that it does not stand out as much as the other designs. I think this is because of the smaller headline and the amount of words on it. Despite this, I still like the design and particularly like the caption, which balances out the text on both sides.



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I’ve placed these three layouts together because they are largely the same. I just wanted to highlight how the picture format can affect the page and how you use it.

This simple layout is clean and crisp and perfect for the introduction of a photo story. It’s versatility means that any amount of text within the column can look good and simple changes such as the width of the column or a line under the title can give each story an element of attention whilst keeping a strong continuity within the editorial.

Check out Pig House Pictures here and support their publication and Falmouth University’s visual storytellers.







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PEP160 Narrative & Storytelling 1: News, Editorial & Documentary

This blog is dedicated to a new module of my BA(Hons) Press & Editorial Photography course, where I am creating four double-page spread editorials based on two photo stories.

One will use an existing 35mm black and white photo story from module PEP110 (see previous posts on home page), and one will be made up of pictures from a current project, which can be either digital or 35mm analogue.

The main difference between the two double page spreads is that one will be made up from pictures where I have not necessarily shot for an editorial space, where as the second will be pictures I have shot specifically for the editorial space.

For the second double page spread, I have the option to use digital pictures, which opens doors to potentially creating a layout with colour images as opposed to black and white. I will also be given complete control over how many images I can use for the establishing page and the main body, where as for the first spread, I am limited to one picture for the establishing spread.

In a world where there are fewer and fewer jobs within the editorial process, it is necessary to be the ‘architect’ of your own work. Not just being able to take a photograph as a photographer, but to also be the picture editor, journalist, designer and art director.

This blog will hopefully take you on my journey of creating the editorial. I will post what I have been inspired by, my choices of negatives and digital files, the scanning/digital editing processes, successes and struggles with InDesign, lecture notes and so on.

So if you have an interest in creating editorials but don’t know much about it – you may find this page interesting/useful/boring/rubbish.

See you on the next post.

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