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Alexey Brodovitch was an influential editorial designer in the 1950s. He was an artist, graphic designer and photographer. However, he was most famous for his art direction, primarily for the magazine Harpers Bazaar. He was an aesthetic entity whose permanent influence was perceived along the entire visual arts. His style of combining elegantly set typography with new and experimental trends in photography became widely popular in the 1940s and 1950s, helping to keep the magazine at the forefront of its field in a swiftly changing world. Brodovitch was the first art director to integrate image and text. Most American magazines at that time used text and illustration separately, dividing them by wide white margins. Brodovitch



Kirsty Hair | Design Context

cropped his photographs, often offcenter, brought them to the edge of the page, and integrated them in the whole. He used his images as a frozen moment in time and often worked with succeeding pages to create a nice flow through the entire magazine. This brought a new dynamism in fashion layouts. The typeface he preferred was Bodoni, but when needed he switched to Stencil, Typewriter or a script. He matched the typeface with the feeling or with the need for an appropriate effect. Legibility was not his primary concern and his layouts are easily recognized by his generous use of white space. Colleagues at other magazines saw his sparse designs as truly elegant, but a waste of valuable space.

by Kirsty Hair




Like most graphic design, newspaper and magazine design is an exercise in combining technical detail with artistic flair. The core components of editorial design are text and pictures, so a keen understanding of typography, layouts, grids and composition is essential. In fact, magazines perhaps more than any other format show how the many elements of graphic design can come together in one place: images, illustration, photography, logos and mastheads, information design, paper stock and so on. What is perhaps a little different from other areas of graphic design is that editorial design demands constant reinvention, as Jeremy Leslie of magculture. com explains: ‘Editorial design uses and fuses two key elements of graphic design. It uses templates and sets up rules to follow, which is the technical side, in terms of understanding structure and limiting your choices to make certain statements. But it’s also about taking the rules that you have set up and making something creative from them. Unlike most areas of graphic design, editorial design is an ongoing project. It’s not a one-off, like a piece of packaging or a poster, where you get it all set up and then hit the print button; it needs to develop. So you’re looking for graphic designers to come up with a strong functional basis and rules, but you’re also looking to bend those rules on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. There has to be a balance between the familiar, so people recognise the magazine they bought last time, and surprise, to let them know it’s a new issue.




Words taken from:


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Foreword Acknowledgements Chapter 1: High End Design Developing a brand concept logo Graphic Design for Fashion Editorial Design Alexey Brodovitch Chapter 2: Designers & Studios Andrew Woodhead Interview: Brett Phillips - 3 Deep Silnt Interview: Craig Ward - Words are Pictures Why Not Associates Interview: Andy Bone - Four IV GBH Design - SLS Luxury Hotels Chapter 3: Design Essentials 12In12 Generation Press An& Tips

Contact Details


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Whether a purely functional vehicle of catwalk images enclosed by a logoemblazoned cover or a conceptual extension of the collection, the look book is first and foremost a practical tool. Highly covetable and with limited distribution, the seasonal booklets are free and feel more like a personal gift. Not available to the general public, the look book speaks to a select group of press, stylists, buyers and photographers inside the fashion industry. With a target audience of such collective creative

awareness, the expectations for the graphic designer are high. Recent technology now facilitates almost immediate transfer of images directly from the catwalk to the internet. With this instant distribution in conjunction with digital archiving, the basic function of look books has been challenged. Rather than marginalize the practice it has generated every more innovative creative responses that extend the catwalk experience.



Words and images taken from: Hess, J. (2010) Graphic Design for Fashion. London: Laurence King.


Entry to the catwalk show is only granted for a select few and, as such, invitations to these events are restricted and signify the exclusivity of the fashion industry. Beyond the practical details of the event, this is an opportunity to stimulate the interest in the presentation - for the audience, the experience begins with the invitation. The invitation must be relevant to the collection but it must be abstract to avoid revealing too many details. Usually very few invitations are produced, providing the graphic designer with the chance to explore specialist production techniques. Ambitious, creative solutions inevitably hang upon last-minute date and time confirmation. Everything must come together in the tightest of all fashion deadlines. The most successful invitation transcend their brief purpose and become cherished mementos of the event.

There is a simplicity to the most effective branding that belies its underlying complexity. More than an identifiable logo, branding is considered a promise, an experience and a memory. The message must communicate the ambition of the label and the personal and social benefits of association. The nature of fashion elevates aspiration above authenticity. Competition is fierce and growing: the consumer is bombarded with hundreds of branded messages every day. The challenge lies in controlling these very intangible elements with very tangible means.


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It is the close attention to detail, aesthetic quality and the care and effort that is put into design for the high end, that makes it something I am drawn to. It is not only the finished product that interests me, but also the creative design process as a whole, when designing for the fashion, luxury and lifestyle sectors means completely immersing yourself in the culture.

These inspirational people are who I have looked at for guidance on a daily basis, and so it has been a pleasure to bring them all together in this book as a celebration of the work that, in my opinion, has been the leading lights.

Looking at high end design for branding and publication, for the fashion, luxury and lifestyle sectors, I aimed to find out more about this swiftly changing subject, from some of the best design studios in the field. The studios I have chosen to investigate are simply the ones that inspire me personally, and have done since I began my studios, therefore does not take in a full and fair range needed to draw conclusions on this large topic, only observations.

This aim of this book was to collate a range of opinions, thoughts and case studies from design studios that create work for the high end, to act as a source of inspiration for future reference, and also to mark where my practice lies at this moment in time.




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What is the history of the people/thing being presented?

Are people familiar with what you are presenting?

Once you have what the most important thing is, how are you trying to say this?

Who are you communicating with? Students, teachers, people with lots of time, someone passing by?

What is the most important thing you want to say about what you’re going to present?

What is in it for the demographic?

Where will this be represented and how can you make it stand out form other things presented in the same way?

What do you want people to think of the ting being presented?

What is the emotional connection and how do you make it resonate with them?

What tone or attitude do you want to convey?

There are a few things that should be considered when developing a brand concept logo, and a few questions that should be addressed, to ensure the resolution will reach its full potential and requirements.




Words taken from:

- Walter Landor

“Products are created in the factory. Brands are created in the mind.�


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Andy Bone - Four IV

Craig Ward - Words are Pictures

Brett Phillips - 3 Deep

You include:

I would like to give a special thank you to the design studios and designers who got in touch and took the time to answer my questions. You have offered me a real and first hand insight into the workings of your studios and to what designing for the high end entails. This has allowed me to learn more about the discipline in which I have entered, and the sectors that I am interested in designing for.





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