Assignment: Magalog

For this assignment, students work in groups to produce a promotional magalog—part catalog, part magazine—for a fictional type foundry. Students use the works from two previous assignments—written critiques of typefaces and compositions using those fonts—and a provided essay as the main content. They determine their foundry name, the concept for their magalog and its physical dimensions and design.

About the assignment

See examples of student work

Areas of emphasis: typography, branding, publication design, promotional design

Summary: Students work in groups to create a promotional publication for a fictional type foundry. They are assigned to create a “magalog”— part magazine, part catalog— to promote the foundry’s typefaces. The students have each written critiques for and created type compositions for different typefaces. This content becomes the backbone of the assignment. They are also required to incorporate Beatrice Warde’s “The Crystal Goblet” essay, a table of contents, a colophon, an “about” section and cover and spine design as appropriate. Through this assignment, students grapple with designing a cohesive typographic system for their publication, creating a compelling concept to promote their foundry and deciding upon the physicality and production aspects of their promotional design.

Timing in program: First semester, junior year

Audience: Determined by students

Project partners: Students work in groups of 4-5

Timeline: 6 weeks

Learning objectives:
– To experiment with typographic hierarchy to create a dynamic, content-driven design.
– To explore multiple levels of typographic hierarchy.
– To explore content-driven solutions to a design problem.
– To gain experience using a grid system to create a cohesive, consistent layout over a series of pages.
– To gain collaboration experience.

Learning outcomes:
– To put proper typographic form into practice.
– To learn how to design a multiple-page document.
– To design promotional material.

Examples of Student Work

Blood Type magalog design

Design by Brooke Goren, Princetta Jarry, Grant McFarland and Brittany O’Brien. The design won a Gold ADDY for Package Design and a Gold ADDY for Book Design at the 2014 Washington, D.C. American Advertising Awards and and a Silver ADDY for Package Design and a Silver ADDY for Book Design at the District level (includes NY, NJ, DE, MD, PA and D.C.). They packaged their design in hospital fluid bags.

Tarot Type magalog

Design by Moriah Bradski, Reza Ganji, Simran Gill, Penelope Hutchins and Zev Shields. The design won a Silver ADDY for product packaging at the 2018 Washington, D.C. American Advertising Awards.

F.I.B. magalog design

Design by Drew Darden, Sarah Gerlach, Kevin Rudolph and Katie Zeng.

TyPica magalog design

Design by Evan-Zane Green, Maya Johnston, Hannah Shams and Mingxin Ye.

TypeFirst magalog design

Design by Solomia Nebesh, Jose Sorto-Guevara, Jordan Stovka, Mariam Tammam and Emma Weiss. The design won a publication design award at the 2018 AIGA FLUX Design Competition.

State of Mind magalog design

Design by Nursena Acar, Javier Aguilar, Ana Maldonado and Zebrielle Wheatley. The design won a Gold ADDY for book design at the 2017 Washington, D.C. American Advertising Awards.

Sequoia magalog design

Design by Leigh Caulfield, Jooyeon Kim, Rachel Lebo, Julie Norcross and Amalya Sherman.

Enigma magalog design

Design by Amon Bennett, Steffanie Espat, Blake Mooney and Nikki Puccio.

Arcanum magalog design

Design by Alla Bliskovsky, Joseph Carson, Juan-Felipe Pataquiva, Yun Zhang and Cary Zon.