Magazine spread

1 minute video

We've

arrived at Underground.

Brief

P22 Type Foundry’s Underground font caught my attention immediately for its wide sans serif letters and calligraphic strokes. As I read up on its connection to the London Underground Railway, I became more and more intrigued in the typeface's history.

 

My project brief included making a magazine spread that exemplified the qualities of Underground and a moving type video that tells Underground’s story.

 

The spread's body text and video script were both written by me.

Goals

Fall 2020

individual school project 

InDesign, Aftereffects, Illustrator

1

2

tell a story that has both high readability on paper and is  visually engaging in motion

Be more knowledgeable about the history and intricacies of typographic forms

Spread Process

(click here to jump to Video Process)

Research

When a reader opens up a spread, they first see the bold image, which can also dictate the spread's layout. Therefore, I first started looking for an image to use.

 

I was most inspired by the Underground Railway posters and the unique arc of underground train tunnels.

Determining Letting

I tried setting type for the first time, and it was a very insightful learning experience. I originally wanted to use Underground Pro book type as the font for body type, but I later on switched to serif font Georgia for better readability.

Experimenting with text and image

For my initial iterations, I focused too much on forcing the text to conform with the image. I failed to make the text reading experience interesting and gave too much attention towards the image.

initial iterations

Picking the right image

I was first working with photographs and making simple vector arcs. After working with those images, I decided to go back to the Underground posters because of their beautiful colors and more complex scenery. I decided that the red train was the essence of the illustration I picked and cropped out everything else.

Understanding Subliminal Proportions

Another skill I learned other than letting was how make my spread subliminally harmonious.

With this iteration, I took the proportions of the capital U from the Underground font and made the column widths and illustration width the same proportions (green box). I also lined up the position of the columns with the perspective and dimensions of the tunnel illustration (blue lines).

With my final iteration, I had the column widths match with the window widths of the train (colored boxes) and used the diagonal slant of the train seats to dictate the angle of text and vector elements.

Challenges

Finding the right image was a difficult process, but I learned that I shouldn't be afraid of exploring new options. Also, because this spread project happened right after my Irish poster project, I quickly learned the different needs a close-to-your-face, text-heavy magazine spread has compared to those of a poignant poster.

 

Video Process

Developing script and storyboard

I took my spread body text and condensed it to a script that concisely describes the origin story and characteristics of Underground Pro. Then I drew a storyboard to match words with visuals.

Choosing color and music

While I was considering slow piano lounge music, I started storyboarding in Illustrator and found my color palette to be boring and painful to the eyes. However, once I picked a faster tempo jazz piece, I started using a brighter color palette that matched my spread with a few added hues like a salmon pink and dark brown.

This made me realize how much music choice affects colors and the videos I produce.

animated storyboard to help determine video's pacing

Playing around with moving vectors

I was very interested in abstract shapes, such as having a yellow trapezoid represent a moving train or have grey bars represent train tracks. I liked the subtle mystery of not knowing what the shape means at first because it shows how much meaning simple objects can convey.

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Telling a Cultural Story