Field Notes: Furniture

Nameplate: The nameplate to a publication is the name of the newspaper displayed on page one. The Globe and Mail’s nameplate is large, white text on a red background. The display is eye-catching and sophisticated. The nameplate is also located in the upper-left corner of the paper and takes up less than an eighth of the page. However, this doesn’t make it any less noticeable because it is written in all caps, a serif font, and the contrasting colors draw direct attention. No other element on the first page uses this color scheme.

Teasers: A teaser is a headline or a photo with a caption on the front page that promotes content within the paper. The Globe and Mail does not have as many teasers as most other papers. Its teasers are located in the bottom of the front page and there are only three of them. This paper  makes a bold move by having one central image on the cover and smaller, unnoticeable teasers on the bottom. But I think it works. Rather than having to search through headlines to find the most important story of the day, The Globe has it right there. It’s a simple design, but it’s powerful. It makes you wonder what else could be inside.

Rule: It’s a term for a straight line or a boarder. Just on the cover, they make good use of rules. Between the teasers at the bottom, there are rules to separate the teasers, which makes it clean and easy to read. Below the nameplate, there is a grey rule to section off the main cover photo and the nameplate with a little maple leaf at the end of it. Again, it provides barriers so the content is easy to focus in on. In the succeeding pages, there are rules to separate every column of text, even if it is the same story. I think this is a smart idea because sometimes small text and column can all blend together. This way, it is easier to read.

Cutlines: A cutline is a description of a photo underneath the photo. In the Globe and Mail, cutlines are as any other cutlines, simple and unobtrusive. They serve their purpose. Some cutlines, however, are full on paragraphs. Be neath one photo, the text is large and the leding wide.This photo has its own section marked off by rules. Other photos do not have any cutlines. I think the Globe does this based on where it sees fit. One photo needs a lot of context, where the other does not. I don’t think the different cutlines are distracting but rather intelligently placed and informative.

Bylines & Credit lines: It is the reporter’s or writer’s name. The bylines here are plan and simple. They appear at the beginning of each story in between two dotted lines, which gives it a sheik design. The byline has only their name and no other information, so unless you are familiar with the writer’s work, you will not know what kind of writer he or she is, which is OK because most people don’t care anyway. Following the story is always, “Canadian Press,” you know, just to remind you. Sometimes the story came from the New York Times though, in which case that would be at the end instead. I can;t remember ever seeing that kind of attribution in a paper before, so it’s nice.

Folio: The type at the top of the page giving the paper’s name, date, and page number. There are folio’s at the top inside of each page. The folio’s are clean and sophistatcated and do their job. I think they are done well because they are consistent with each page.

Continuation Lines: These are lines that tell the reader the story continues on to another page. The Globe lacks them. I realized that in this way, the paper seems highly unorganized and I find myself wondering if or where the story continues. At the head of several columns there are lines indicating that this is a continued story but there are no lines indicating the story continued where the story orginally began. I think the Globe needs to indicate if and where stories continue because right now it is very hard to read and find stories.

Drop Caps: These are large, bold capital letters or words at the beginning of a story, usually taking up two or more lines. The Globe does not always use drop caps, but when it does, it is only the first letter and takes up only two lines. They aren’t very obtrusive and I think the reason for their usage in about every other story is so that it just differentiates between stories, because otherwise things start to blend in and look the same. For this reason, I think they made good choice with not over-doing the drop caps and using them sparingly.

Pullquotes: Pullquotes are quotes pulled from the story and used in a graphic way to draw readers’ attention to it. Pullquotes are rare in The Globe. When they do appear, the are preceeded by a large, blue, graphic quotation marks. They only are above the quote, they do not appear below or mark the end of the quote. This is sort of confusing but since the graphic quotation marks are more of a graphic element than a necessary one, it’s OK. I am also glad they did them in blue and not red, which seems to be paper’s home color, because it doesn’t distract from the rest of the paper. Having any color at all still draws attention, but not as much as red.

Box: Boxes are ruled boarders around a story or art. There are no boxes around pictures but there is always a box around a story. However, I think they use them too much because along with the rules, it appears as though no story is together. Looking at the whole page, it looks as if every block of text is a separate story and it is kind of confusing for the reader.

Lauren Boudreau

One Comment

  1. Overall you did a good job, but you’re missing the required examples, which really help the reader visualize. A few other quick notes … 1.) Cutlines don’t have to be beneath the image. They can also be above, next to or inside. 2. ) Bylines and credit lines are not just for writers but for photographers and graphic artists too.

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