A story from our April 2019 issue has been nominated for a Folio: Ozzie Award.
Graphic designer Jaron Cote’s bold, eye-catching layout for “When Writing Gets Us in Trouble” landed him a Feature Design Ozzie nomination in the “Consumer, Under 100,000” category.
The Writer‘s sister publication JazzTimes is also nominated in the same category. Other finalists include stories from 5280 Home and The New Republic.
“From issue to issue, The Writer is a well-written and well-designed publication. I am thrilled that our designer Jaron Cote is being recognized for his consistent devotion to his work, and honored to be in such good company within the other category nominees,” Art Director Carolyn Marsden says.
Jaron has been with the magazine since 2016. Previously, his design for The Writer’s “Take a Writing Vacation” article was nominated for the 2018 Ozzie award in the same category.
Designed to reward excellence in magazine publishing, the Eddie & Ozzie awards have been received by top publications for more than 25 years. More than 2,500 nominations were received for the 2019 awards. The winners will be announced on Oct. 30 at a ceremony in New York City.
We asked Jaron to share a little more about his design inspiration and process for The Writer.
Interview with Jaron Cote, Graphic Designer at The Writer
What was your design process like for “When Writing Gets Us in Trouble?”
I’d always wanted to work with collages and this article felt like the perfect opportunity to explore that style of design. I chose images related to law and censorship and used them to create collages that would hopefully grab the reader’s attention and draw them into the article. It’s a fun challenge anytime I get to try out a new style of design.
As a publication written by wordsmiths, for wordsmiths, The Writer is obviously a magazine that’s very text-heavy. But as a two-time Folio nominee, you clearly never let the design take a backseat. How do you create layouts that allow the words to shine without letting the art suffer?
It can be a tough balance because the design should never distract from the text. Since it’s a magazine about words and writing, however, I want to include as much imagery and design as possible to help break up the pages and make it an enjoyable reading experience. My general rule is to let the article length dictate how much space I have for design and to never cram in the text or spread it out too far.
What’s your favorite thing about working on The Writer?
The thing I enjoy most (and what is actually the most challenging) is the abstract topics that are covered in each issue. Figuring out how to visually represent an article without concrete imagery is tough, but it forces me to push my creativity further to create an interesting design for the readers. It’s satisfying as a designer to be able to create something visual out of a few blank pages and 3,000 words of text.
In addition to designing the entire interior of the magazine, you also design each issue cover. Do you have a favorite cover of 2019 so far?
There’s a few, but my favorite one to design was the August 2019 issue. I liked working with a photograph in the design, which is something I don’t often do in The Writer.
Last question: What are you reading right now?
I’m currently reading The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz.