FROM VALDOSTA, GA, here are some pages from Valdosta Scene, a monthly glossy magazine published by the Valdosta Daily Times. Derek Schaper sent these (and some others we’ll get to in coming weeks) for your review and comment. My thoughts follow Derek’s note.
FROM DEREK: I handle the layout of The Valdosta Scene magazine, some special sections and a few other magazines that our smaller surrounding papers publish. I struggle to keep the magazine from looking too plain or stale (I usually have only a few days to put it together each month). Any fresh ideas or criticism would be a big help to me. Thanks for your time.
FROM ED: Well, the very first thing that leaps off the front page is the huge UPC code. It sure would be helpful to find a way to get that more out of the way, perhaps by using it as part of a teaser package across the bottom of the page, with a different color block behind it. Contents page works nicely for me, with the exception of the transparent page numbers over the photos. The approach seems to work well enough over the top two photos, but because the numbers are so light, they had to be placed over people in the lower photo (while there was lots of white space in the bottom left of that pic!). Oh…the last number is 42, but there’s no listing for a page 42 in the type to the left of the photos. The composition of the last page is fine but it uses a different darker green than the index page. Makes me wonder whether that was on purpose or just a mistake.
Those are my quick thoughts on these pages. As I noted earlier, we’ll see more pages from Derek coming up. But, for now, what are your criticisms and suggestions on these three? Let us know!