Monday, 24 September 2007

Tangible reading

'Digital information may be impossibly voluminous and convenient, but it is also vulnerable and dangerously disposable. Already a vast amount of information has been lost. CDs disintegrate in just 20 years, whereas the Domesday Book, written on sheepskin in 1086, will still be with us in another millennium. Few people still write regular letters, but their replacement, the ubiquitous e-mail, is so easily deleted and forgotten, to say nothing of the fleeting text message. ' Ben Macintyre

As an editorial designer, advanced in years, and not wholly anti digital text, it's unsettling having to make shifts in the craft of typography to suit the speed of the online migration.

According to Wikipedia, typography is performed by typesetters, compositors, typographers, graphic artists and art directors. Until the Digital Age, typography was a specialised occupation. Digitisation opened up typography to new generations of visual designers and lay users.

It's the lay users that get me. Just because you 'can design' a cover of a magazine, doesn't mean that you have. The word 'specialised' is the key word.

Trying to maintain the standard of editorial design with migration to web speeding every careful design consideration, is of concern, if we are to keep the paper design principles high...

9 comments:

Barbara said...

High design values are what make reading paper publications a pleasure. Do not lose heart!

Sooz said...

Thanks for that confirmation, especially from a journalist...!

Jane said...

I so agree... I've seen enough stuff 'designed' by those who are very definitely NOT designers, to appreciate you guys who really are the specialists.

David said...

Surely anyone with a sheet of Letraset and a penchant for three-hour lunchbreaks can do the job of a "designer" standing on his head?

judy said...

Soo.....you said it girl!

Design is where it's at!
It can really make all the difference, especially as consumers have become so 'designer' aware

Sooz said...

After years of letrasetting standing on my head after 3 white wine spritzers, are the days that I cherish...

I have awards to prove that my letter spacing was without compare, even in Palace Script.

Sooz said...

Thank you Judy for your support — gone are the days of clumsy kerning, the Spacing Police are everywhere...

Harris Hewson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Harris Hewson said...

I can think of at least on publication I've seen recently that had been butchered by someone who is clearly not a designer! Honestly, these things should be left to the professionals and not Microsoft Office users with a penchant for fingerpainting...!