Did you enjoy the video of the Hopkins/Baumann combined work-living space in Minneapolis? Isn't it amazing? Told you!

Mary Baumann and Will Hopkins collect beautiful ceramics, brushes, and b/w photography (you've seen those in the video), but they also have another fun and surprising collection, one that I absolutely love: TOYS! This image shows just a small part of the collection. They have toys tucked away in surprising places all throughout their apartment. You can find them in various nooks and crannies, sometimes almost camouflaged in the brickwork, and sometimes high up on a wall, almost out of sight. As I was walking around their place I stumbled on groupings of toys by accident. Great sense of humor. You know how I like that.

One last image I want to share with you about the space itself before we move on to the design aspect. This specific feature of the space could not be seen in the video because everyone was working on it: the dining room table can be moved along the tracks in the floor. If there's a party going on that needs to accommodate a lot of people, or if Mary and Will simply want to sit somewhere else than in the kitchen, the table moves on its tracks all the way from the dining area to their work space. Genius!

Let's move on to how the layout is done. The next image shows you a basic overview of the June/July issue everybody was working on. As you can see, this is a simple but effective way to keep track of what's been put in place where. The yellow areas are advertising spaces.

Pagination (page numbers) usually change several times over the course of the design process. It is actually the last thing that is nailed down. Mary explained that they do that last to allow for optimal visual flow in the magazine, sometimes segments need to be shifted around.

Designer Mary Baumann at her desk working on layout.

Looking directly at Mary's computer: In essence, the magazine is laid out on a grid which allows for consistent alignment of text and images. The above images shows a typical grid.

Mary, Will, and Chelsea work on a 12 line grid without horizontal lines, which gives them more freedom to arrange images and text.

Here you can see how easily images and text can be moved around and be realigned any which way on the 12 line grid.

The designers work with set templates style sheets for the different segments of the magazine to keep things consistent with typographics and layout. You don't want to reinvent the wheel with every issue, but some creative freedom is possible if things need to be adjusted.

Just in case you think designing is all fun and games, a simple drop click and done, here's a small window into the painstaking process of every single page. This process constantly overlaps, people are working on various pages at once and in different shifts. The whole process is completely fluid but basically follows these rules:

(1) A preliminary first layout is done with images (not yet optimized for print) and texts approved by the editors. Ensuring images are placed inside blue lines. Tiffs are preferred over PDFs! Saved as L1. Returned to the magazine editors for review.

(2) The editors look through the preliminary layout, add headlines and sub headlines, captions, fit the text, add photo credits. Return to designers electronically as R (1-3 depending on editing phase.)

(3) Changes are implemented by designers. Photos are optimized and put in place. Returned electronically to magazine editors as L2.

(4) Magazine editors check and approve.

(5) Magazine is printed at office in final form (on a copier), page numbers get assigned.

(6) Once layout and editing phase is over, the magazine files are sent to pre-press and a final layout is generated. Preferably, all edits and changes have been made before the files go to pre-press because all changes done subsequently cost money.

(7) Pre-press print out is checked one last time, then all files are compressed and sent to press. The magazine is now in print! Whew.

Quintessential office tool that gets this major design job done? The printer. An absolute monster. Don't know how anything could be accomplished without it.

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Replies to This Discussion

Found myself thinking about how Evan and I have always had a live/work space, each of which (2) have been in a house and currently a very old and rambling farmhouse. Luckily we found the space(s) we needed at a time when we could afford to do so. This space in Minneapolis is truly inspiring and the blogging/recording you have been doing, Brigette, is remarkable. No surprise there. Thanks for doing this.

Thank you, Linda. This job was as much fun as it was informative. I honestly did not have much of an idea what editing the mag and layout really all entailed. Boy, have I learned a lot last week. Fascinating stuff. Great people. Everyone's 100% dedicated to getting the job done perfectly. Inspiring to say the least.

Happy you like it too!!


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