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zeal publication

Received Honorable Mention in the Graphis New Talent Competition


I created a creative writing publication called "ZeAL." The idea of Zeal is to provide an open forum for up and coming creative writers to submit their work and connect with readers and writers of the world. Because Zeal is centered on writing, I chose to focus on typographic elements to give the publication its personality. Zeal is exciting and new, it is open and inviting, it is mindful of newcomers, and it is expressive of all ideas.  

the process

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Because Zeal is all about connection and openness in the creative writing world, I wanted the wordmark to represent these ideals. These are a few of the very many wordmarks that I sketched as what could be the mark of Zeal.

A gif showing the development of the Zeal wordmark. Once I chose my basic letterforms, I fine-tuned them to emphasize the connectedness and soft, open expression that Zeal is. 

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Final Zeal wordmark depicting the open connection of Zeal. The Color chosen here is the only color in all of the Zeal publication. A bright, zesty green represents the excitement and enthusiasm for creativity and expression that those who interact with Zeal have. 

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For the interior pages of Zeal, first I had to choose a typeface pairing that would enhance the composition and best represent Zeal's missionTrade Gothic was originally designed for writing publications such as magazines, books, and newspapers. This typeface is bold and open, which matches the expressively timid personality that is Zeal. Poynter Oldstyle is a serif typeface that was designed for body copy writing in small sizes, most typically seen in newsprint. This typeface has humanistic features that gives it an open and soft feeling. As a creative wiring publication, it is important for Zeal to emphasize the form of the writing itself. 

The grid of the Zeal publication is an unseen element that still keeps the pages cohesive and characteristic. This grid was chosen to hold the contents of Zeal, with dimensions and gutters that are proportionate to the 3:4 modular scale ratio (perfect fourth). This ratio was originally chosen so that the columns of text could be more vertically emphasized, which relates back to writing traditions throughout history, where vertical columns were seen to signify the power of the words written on the page. 

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Early composition iterations. As the process moved along, the expressive attitude of the publication began to show typographically instead. Color was taken away so that the writing could be emphasized and create expression on its own. 

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Early cover sketches for the publication using typography and image

Zeal standards for design

Final Mockups

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The final layout of Zeal characterizes eager expression and the simple timidity. The bold texture and spacing seen in titles adds rhythm and typographic color to the composition, while speaking to the explorative mood of Zeal, as well as the connection that is part of Zeal's culture. The black and white simplicity of the compositions acknowledge Zeal's timidity and desire to remain grounded. 

Small features, such as a paragraph symbol and period signify the start and end to sections of writing. Page numbers are held on a shelf of text created from content of whichever page it sits on, which ties in the texture that is being achieved throughout the spreads. 

Throughout the body copy, each paragraph is treated with appropriate tracking and leading to create variations in texture and communication style, in relation to the text that it is representing. Poetry is treated typographically to lead the reader through the poetry in the way that it might be spoken. 

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