Before I begin, just know this is about finding inspiration. And it is going to be very long. You have been warned.
It’s the time of year when you start trying to figure out what in the world you are going to do with your book next year. But, before you speed over to Barnes and Noble to pour over magazines, I want you to try something. It sounds kind of strange, but close your eyes and just picture next year’s book. Is it full of colors or school spirit? What is the “voice” of your book? Does your book project sass and modernness or is it more individual-centered and weathered? If you cannot for the life of you figure out a direction you want your book to go in, then start looking for inspiration EVERYWHERE. It reminds me of that Disney movie, Up- “Inspiration is out there!”
Some of our past books were inspired by a passing comment in a conversation at camp, an ad in a store window and a Toy Story advertisement. You will be sitting with your staff throwing ideas in the air and all of a sudden, someone says something that just ignites a blast of ideas. Then, you’re off and running with a theme! Those are the moments us yerds live for.
In my opinion, Pinterest is the adult version of Tumblr. Nevertheless, The Yearbook Ladies pin tons of inspiration as do Mike Taylor and Ginger Thompson. Pinterest is becoming very popular, Herff Jones Yearbooks has a Pinterest- even the Whitney Details staff has one! The cool thing about Pinterest is that each photo marks a website along with it. So if you see a pin that you like, chances are that it links to another website with more ideas just like that.
Ads of the World
www.adsoftheworld.com is a link some advisers shared with us last year at camp. It’s just got a bunch of ads and you can sort them in various ways such as media, product and region. Ads are designed and filled with words intended to capture your eye, right? So you might as well look at them. Just be sure to read the whole ad and not only the main slogan. Sometimes you have to dig a little for that golden nugget of inspiration.
Oh, hey- you’re already here! Take full advantage of the tracking feature on Tumblr. I love the font and typography tags along with the design tags. Here are some cool design blogs (submit any if I’ve left out your favorites):
Some Additional Links
Lately everyone in the yearbook world has been leaning towards the internet for inspiration because by the time that magazine you are holding has been published, that design is months old. However, there are still some great resources for inspiration.
And here’s a tip. Even though you are at the book store looking at magazines, you don’t have to buy them all. Take our your phone or camera and snap a few photos, send them to someone and print what you like out.
Zinio- this is a free app for iPad or iPhone and one Saturday I spent three hours going through the spreads taking screenshots. You can opt to buy magazines, but the “free” section is extensive enough to keep you occupied for a long time.
For starters, here is a link to a list of some graphic design magazines with free content and here are a few more magazine that I can think of off the top of my head:
Those surfing magazines
Magazines from Europe
If you’re made it this far, I’m really proud. Take some of these ideas and see what you can do with them. Remeber, “Inspiration is out there!”