Johnson speaks about the delicate balance between content and design
Producing a paper with an appealing design while maintaining strong content can be quite the balancing act.
On July 13, Johnson spoke to students attending the High School Journalism Institute about content and design, saying a newspaper can not be strong with one but not the other. In his presentation he divulged tips to elevate the content and design of newspapers, magazines and yearbooks.
WHO IS RON JOHNSON?
Working as Director of Student Media at Indiana University, Johnson has gained experience overseeing the design process that goes into a student produced newspaper and magazine. In the past Johnson taught at Kansas State University and worked to produce the Kansas State Collegian daily newspaper.
ACHIEVING A VISUALLY APPEALING DESIGN THAT IS EASY TO NAVIGATE
Throughout his presentation, Johnson defined five main talking points: content and concept, storytelling, visuals, packaging and white space. He emphasized communication between writers, photographers and designers to produce a cohesive package. Johnson showcased various layouts, explaining what techniques are effective and ineffective when designing an issue. He stressed grids, white space and dominant photos as keys to elevate the appearance of magazines, yearbooks, and newspapers.
Johnson defined five steps to improve the design of high school newspapers and magazines.
MAINTAINING STRONG CONTENT AND LOCALIZING NATIONAL NEWS
While Johnson stressed design, he said content is equally important. With much going on in the national news, Johnson said he recommends high school newspaper staffs address the events around the nation but localizing them so they appeal to the student body.
Johnson provides an overview of his presentation, Content and Design: A Delicate Balance.