Idea File - 2017 Spring

Caught Our Eye

Brian Wilson 2017-03-07 02:01:26

Intriguing design will make your readers stop at a spread - to scrutinize the photos and really read the copy and captions. Meaningful coverage, with an eye to the future, will ensure that your readers will pull the book from the shelf many times during the years. Brian Wilson, adviser at Palo Alto High School in Palo Alto, California, has found great examples of spreads with eye-catching design and interesting stories. See if there’s anything that can be adapted to your yearbook. The Legend El Dorado High School, El Paso, Texas THEME: “Whole..." ADVISER: Vanessa Juarez EDITORS: Danielle Miller, Exodis Ward WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Lori Garcia MAKE YOUR MARK The deck explains how, “ In a text-crazy world," it's nice to see the personalized touch in handwritten notes. And the feature goes further, actually including the thoughts of three seniors in their own writing style. As techno-crazed as we can get, there's something refreshing about good old-fashioned notes. Considering ways to incorporate low-tech graphics packages will give your book a personalized feel that's sometimes difficult to obtain. Excalibur Village Christian Academy, Fayetteville, North Carolina THEME: "The Days of our Knights" ADVISER: Emily Barrett EDITOR: Maggie McFadyen WALSWORTHREPRESENTATIVES: Davis Gamble, Tyler Craig WHAT CAN YOU BUY WITH $2016 A few different purposes are served with this fun, engaging pop culture spread. Ostensibly a fun feature on how far you can stretch a dollar, it also sneakily makes the yearbook into an important time capsule by featuring items that are important to students at the time. This is a sometimes undervalued aspect of the book; don't forget that people will be looking at your work for a LONG time! Heritage Cousino High School, Warren, Michigan THEME: “ In Focus" ADVISER: Lise Blades EDITOR: Rebecca Gieleghem WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVES: Deanne DeMare, Lisa Sparks, Nora Guiney GENERATIONS OF PATRIOTS Here's an ingenious story idea that has great reader interest and could be replicated anywhere in the country: students whose parents graduated from the same school as them. The Heritage staff had each of these students pose with their parent's yearbook, and gave them an opportunity to talk about the coolness of their experience (sample: “My dad tells me all the weird things that went on back in his day and how easy-going everything was."). And there's a tremendous bonus to a spread like this one: readers will realize just how important it is to capture moments in the yearbook. You might just increase your sales without intending to! The Chancellor Winston Churchill High School, San Antonio, Texas THEME: “ Big" ADVISER: Dolores Caamano EDITORS: Allegra Acosta, Edith Shaw WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVES: Brian Darland, JerryGriffin WHAT EMOJI ARE YOU? Here's a great way to get more of the student body involved in the book, and potentially a solid way to cover some students who might not otherwise be too involved in clubs and sports. This is one of those spreads that's fun now, but will likely be REALLY enjoyable in 10 or 20 years. The story is told completely through the quotes of the students, which is absolutely acceptable tor a design piece like this one. This spread definitely gave me a smiley face. Maybe even a smiley winky face. :) The Blue Devil Bremen High School, Bremen, Georgia THEME: “ Journey" ADVISER: Lisa Scott EDITOR: Lexi Covalsen WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVES: Shannon Minninger, Brooke Smith TOGETHER AGAIN Whenever you have a chance to tell an emotional story, TELL it. The Blue Devil staff included a fantastic sidebar story in their coverage of the year's first pep rally, capturing a moment that will live forever. In this case, a student is surprised during a blindfolded activity by his father, who had been serving overseas for nearly a year. These stories enable the staff to distinguish that year from any other. Including coverage of these powerful and emotional moments can elevate otherwise standard coverage. The Archive Richland Northeast High School, Columbia, South Carolina THEME: “ React" ADVISER: Jenny Proctor EDITORS: Yeji Bang, Katherine Grant WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Jim Channell ONCE IN A THOUSAND YEARS Our job is to tell the story of the year. In doing that, it's critical to avoid shying away from the elements that make that year memorable, regardless of how positive they might be. Of course, oftentimes incredibly uplifting stories result from the most trying of times. The staff of The Archive decided that covering a devastating flood was crucial to being able to tell their story, and the resulting spread is incredibly powerful. The story's lede draws the reader immediately into the coverage: “The waters came swiftly, suddenly, but in no way silently." The photos show people from the Columbia community helping others and pitching in to give back. This is a package that will resonate for years. Legend Brookfield Central High School, Brookfield, Wisconsin THEME: "Changing Perspectives" ADVISER: Thomas Juran EDITORS: Emma Kumer, Sean Linnihan WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Shelley Mosley CROSS COUNTRY BY THE NUMBERS This is an uber-cool melding of the two components that every brilliant info-graphic must have: visual appeal and intriguing information. You see plenty of graphics that have one or the other, but rarely are they both so apparent. Here, a partial-cutout photo serves as the backdrop for a bar graph on runner improvement times over the course of the cross country season. The use of bold clearly indicates which runner is featured in the photo, and the deck provides an explanation in case the reader might not fully understand the concept. Using the photo in black and white helps with ease of readability and also sets it off from the rest of the spread. Talon Lincoln Southwest High School, Lincoln, Nebraska THEME: “That One Time" ADVISER: Brandi Benson, CJE EDITORS: Hailey Humiston, Makenzie Waller WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Mike Diffenderfer AUGUST CALENDAR Now that so many staffs are converting to chronological coverage, that in and of itself is no longer enough to qualify as unique. But incorporating the calendar design into the theme package and creating a completely different type of calendar... well, that WOULD qualify. The Talon staff, with their “That One Time" theme, was able to design a super-cool triangle calendar that works well to get a variety of events covered. A combination of photos and cut-outs adds to the effect, allowing these dividers to look like they came straight from a trendy magazine. Excalibur Walled Lake Northern High School, Commerce, Michigan THEME: “ Day & Knight" ADVISER: Donna Ramin EDITORS: Emma Totin, Donovan Wallace, Ashley Koenig WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVES: Deanne DeMare, Lisa Sparks, Nora Guiney THE DAY WE WERE ASKED If you're an old person like me, you might be thrown off by the elaborate plans put into place by enterprising high school students during Homecoming-ask season. I really don't remember anything other than saying, “ umm...would you go with me?" and then turning bright red. But today, students are WAY more creative with the process, and it's a great idea for yearbook coverage as well. The signs they used are almost captions in themselves, and this is an excellent way to add personality to your student life section. The Golden Eagle Wilkes Central High School, Wilkesboro, North Carolina THEME: “A BI6 Year" ADVISER: John Elledge EDITORS: Sydney Delbridge, Trent Craven, Simone Cutler WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Brooke Smith IN 60 MINUTES I CAN... A great example of the type of coverage that can be generated from your theme, this spread pulls its inspiration from the “ B16 Year" theme developed throughout the book. It also starts with the modular color block motif that is used on the cover and elsewhere, but here it has morphed into a starburst of school colors. A total of 13 students/staff are featured, giving The Golden Eagle staff a high level of readability. The cutouts are well done and match nicely with the design. Designing a swirling spread like this can be a chore, particularly when you d o n 't want to frustrate readers by forcing them to rotate your book a million times to read the quotes. But this one is unique and visually appealing at the same time. Lock & Key South County High School, Lorton, Virginia THEME: “ New Again" ADVISER: Leana Jensen EDITORS: Mina Farah, Lindsey Otto WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: Brian Flamm WINTER BREAK(S) There's so much to love in this spread on snowy weather. The high technical quality of the dominant pic is what draws the reader in first; it's a superb photo that leads your eye into the story. If you can design so that your dominant subject is looking directly at the drop cap in your copy, you've created a winner. The two info graphics are excellent as well, incorporating thematic graphics and connected coverage to complete the package. Both are great examples of readable and unique alternative story forms; this staff has clearly pushed past the dreaded “ hey, let's create a horrific-looking pie chart in Microsoft Excel" stage. We could all learn something from their ingenuity here! The Trail Norman High School, Norman, Oklahoma THEME: “ Up Close" ADVISER: Kerry Friesen EDITOR: Emma Rose WALSWORTH REPRESENTATIVE: John Gearhart, CJE IF YOU’VE GOT IT, HAUNT IT I tell my students all the time that there's a big difference between elegant and simplistic. You can feature minimalist designs in your book, but that doesn't mean that you toss on a photo and a caption and call it a day. This Halloween costume spread is just one of a series of beautifully constructed features throughout a stunning book. After choosing “ Up Close" as their theme, the staff had an opportunity to feature exactly that: close up photography of a ton of students. Superb typography complements the portraits, and helps take the designs from simple to elegant. They are so much fun to look at! ON THE WEB For more Caught Our Eye columns, go to Brian Wilson advises the yearbook and two magazines a t Palo Alto High School in Palo Alto, California. Prior to joining Paly's booming journalism program for the 2016 school year, he was the yearbook, newspaper and online news adviser for 18 years a t Waterford Kettering High School in Waterford, Michigan. He has held positions in JEA and is a past-president of the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association. Among his awards, he was a 2011 JEA Distinguished Yearbook Adviser. He has advised a t the Washington Journalism and Media Conference and the MIPA and Ball State summer workshops. Photo by Dylan Frances Wilson

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