The look of Europe I am always fascinated by how much newspapers look alike globally, but even more surprised by the differences, usually accentuated by touches that are not immediately obvious. As we look through a newspaper vending kiosk of any major city in the world, subtleties become clear. The word variety best describes European papers. In the United Kingdom, we have the icon of what boulevard newspapers are all about, represented by such tabloids as The Sun and The Daily Mail. But there are also the classic models: The Times and The Scotsman, along with more contemporary examples such as The Independent and The Guardian, both a bit dated right now. For the most part, Scandinavian newspaper designers respect typography and white space. Color reproduction is fantastic, along with the use of large images. From Norway to Denmark, and especially in Sweden, artistic precision and functionalism define these papers. Although there has been relatively little innovation in Spanish newspapers in the past two years, they are, no doubt, among the best-designed newspapers in the world. The fresh air that came to Spain following the Franco era manifested itself well in the creation of newspapers that are models for the rest of the world, not only visually but editorially.
With very few exceptions such as Le Monde and Liberation of Paris and Midi Libre of Montpellier, I am always surprised by how poorly designed most French newspapers are. It is surprising because this is a country where design is always spelled with a capital Dâ€”for magazines, fashion, home accessories, and so on. But not newspapers (though it is never too late.) Italian newspapers are not necessarily the most attractive, but they are heavily caffeinated, strong and bold. Not too far behind in energy and typographic passion are Greek newspapers, which are attractive, somewhat chaotic, and often carry great political cartoons, sometimes on the front page. And the top roses in the category of uncontrolled chaos, with overthe-top boldness and passion, goes to the Turkish newspapers. They are truly among the most colorful birds in the continent!. ď€ź
Published on Sep 1, 2009