I was just flipping through the Communication Arts first ever Typography Annual and came across this quote from one of the judges:
“We need to teach designers to be better readers. Once they respect the text, they’ll want to set it well.”
I buy that. Here’s my open question to you readers: What do copywriters need to do to better respect design and art direction?
7 thoughts on “We all gotta learn something”
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Understand that language isn't the only thing that sets tone. It's not just the right words, syntax, or rhythm – but also the canvas it's on, which can drastically change how the audience receives and/or perceives the message
ABA: Always Be Asking.
Why did you use a reflection instead of a drop shadow? Why this typeface? What's your least favourite part of the design? Why are you using Photoshop and not Illustrator? What's a substrate? Etc.
Keep asking the simple questions.
I think a copywriter needs to sit next to the AD/designer for the entire time that the AD/designer is crafting the piece. All night, if need be. For as long as it takes.
Once it's clear that making something beautiful isn't as easy as it looks, I think more respect will come and *hopefully* the writer will make sure to give the AD/designer *at least* the word count for the copy in the ad/poster/whatever.
Couldn't agree more Anon. Well said.
I'd say mutual respect for the other's craft is a given. There needs to be a willingness to have a dialogue, which means both people need to know enough about the other's craft to be able to have that dialogue. My opinion about which type treatment is better may not be as informed as my art director's, but I should have enough knowledge and care enough about it to have an opinion and a reason behind it. Then there can be meaningful conversation.
Copywriters should try to art direct an ad from time to time. Nothing gives you more appreciation for what someone does than putting yourself in their shoes. Even the simplest tasks can take a tremendous amount of time if you're not familiar with the tools.
I also love what Anon said about sitting with your AD for the entire time. That way you can get the copy tuned to the exact character count or length that work for the ad as a complete product.