Chapter 7Editorial Design

Magazines and newspapers once gave opportunities to a large percentage of junior and senior designers and art directors. There are fewer of them in print now, but digital needs have increased the positions for a slew of digital designers.

Within a magazine or newspaper infrastructure, design duties are often divided into two fundamental groups: editorial and promotion. The latter, which administers advertising and publicity, including the conception and design of ads, billboards, branded collateral materials such as “madvertising” rate cards, subscription campaigns, and promotional booklets and brochures, may be large or small, depending on the priorities of the specific company. Today, much of this work is being done in the digital space.

The former, however, is the creative heart of an institution. Editorial designers are the people who give the publication its aura, image, and format. And yet the editorial art department is configured differently from publication to publication, so it is not always possible for a job candidate to know the makeup of specific departments before interviewing for a job (which may or may not help anyway). The following are typical scenarios that illustrate the variety of editorial opportunities.


Design positions at magazines are frequently available for all experience levels. The intense and constant work flow that goes into periodical design and production demands many participants. A typical hierarchy begins ...

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