The Savannah Morning News recently celebrated its 160th anniversary and planned a comprehensive special section to inform readers about the News’ past and future, and also to say thanks to its readers. My part in this massive project was lead designer. It was my job to create a theme concept, which would carry over 128 pages, from design to typography and photo treatment. The section was divided into three parts: 1800s, 1900s, and 2000s. Each section cover represented the corresponding era and used colors, imagery, and even scans of newspapers from that period of time. One thing to note: The banners on each cover were created in Illustrator and assembled with the rest of the cover in Photoshop.
UPDATE: I’m excited to announce this series of illustrated covers won first place from the Georgia Press Association. The award I won is called the Albert & Dorothy Jenkins Award. Here’s what the judges had to say: “Wonderful transformation on the rd section, which deals with different periods in your newspaper’s and Savannah’s history. I want to go searching for a magnifying glass to read the historical covers of The News. Excellent color transformation, too.”
Part 1: The design for Part 1 is from the 1800s cover. I used oranges and browns to create a weathered, sepia effect on the image. Old imagery included run-down brick buildings and smoke stacks, meant to represent the heavy influence of industry during the Second Industrial Revolution. Also included are a few Savannah landmarks that appeared during that time, namely the Cockspur Lighthouse and the version of Forsyth Fountain we recognize today.
Part 2: The design for Part 2 is from the 1900s cover. Various shades of blue and gray lend a slight retro effect while at the same time allowing enough color through to reflect the latter half of the 20th century. The buildings are a little newer looking, and the smoke stacks aren’t billowing as much smoke. Savannah landmarks on this cover include Liberty ships from World War I, planes from World War II, the Tybee Lighthouse, and SCAD marquee that appears on Broughton Street.
Part 3: The design for Part 3 is from the 2000s cover. I chose to go with green as the dominant hue for this cover–it emulates newness, growth, and the recent eco-friendly trends in the area and nation. The building designs are much sleeker and newer, and the snoke stacks are gone. The added landmark is the Talmadge Bridge, which actually was built in the latter half of 1999. In the foreground is a Gulfstream jet, which helps add depth and motion to the cover. One other little detail I placed in the image was a small monitor that has a screenshot of the Savannahnow.com website.
One note I want to make about this project is that I helped cut budgeted overtime costs by about 40% by spending a bulk of time in the planning and conceptual stages, and by delegating some of the inside photo spreads to co-workers. This was one of the most involved and most enjoyable projects I had at the Savannah Morning News.
Software used: Illustrator and Photoshop CS3