The size of The Globe and Mail is 16 x 20, which means that it is a custom size.
While can’t dig up any info that tells me what grids were used, it looks to me like they use a six column grid.
I am pretty sure The Globe uses modular design. Most elements on the cover are in their own little boxes. However, there is an element of the central picture that sticks out above the edge of the box it’s in. It’s a nice touch and isn’t contained but I still the design is pretty modular. Other issues of The Globe stick to more modular design as well.
I believe the function of A1 is to entice and capture the reader’s attention. In all Globe issues, there is a giant, central image that takes your breath away. There are barely any coverlines or ads, just this one image with one headline and the nameplate. The purpose of this cover is to make you think. It’s supposed to make you inquire about the world. The rest of the paper is littered with ads so mostly one story can fit on a page.
The most specific design element that composes the page is the graphics. Like I said, the image is so key to the design that the rest of the design just falls around it. There is also a good use of typography. The front page sticks to all serif typefaces, which adds consistency. The central color palette of red and white also help unify the page.
As said before, information is organized by a grid. Everything compartmentalized and has its place. The front page always follows the same format: a central image with three or four coverlines beneath it.
There is a clear hierarchy among the elements. The photo is the main element. Text is next to none unless you count the nameplate and the headline. This newspaper prides itself on hard-hitting photography.
Overall, from issue to issue, the layout and hierarchy is consistent. There is always the main photo with three or four coverlines beneath it. The “feel” of the front page is one of immediacy. It draws you in and makes you feel like you need to know what is going on. What message this sends about the publication is that it is serious, trustworthy, and accurate. The reader feels like the publication really cares that their audience know what is happening in the world.