Restless Magazine

Web Design / Branding

Restless Magazine is an upcoming e-zine focusing on Art, Design & Music. Taking on the role of branding and web design, the project's main goal was to position itself as a young, creative and authoritative voice in the Western Australian arts scene. It was important that the logo/branding not only communicated the core values of the mag and connected to its key demographic, but also be instantly recognisable, bold and scalable. Being very content heavy, the web design needed to display a lot of content that was easy to digest at a glance while remaining streamline, simplistic and accessible. It was because of this that I chose a 2 column layout with large type and images flowing into a 4 thumbnail grid for the below fold content. This allows the latest articles to be consumed quickly and communicates a clear sense of content hierarchy. 

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The homepage design and layout was very carefully considered with special attention to content and how fast a user could consume it. Because new content will be published daily it was important that visitors be able to quickly determine what content was featured, old and most current. 

Using a full width grid feature slider to promote the bigger articles and news, the layout then drops down into 2 columns ordered top to bottom by date. Having the large 2 column layout meant that the image thumbnails and text appear large, bold and very easily viewed which also gives the user an instant sense of information and chronological hierarchy.

Furthering the visual indication of hierarchy, as you scroll the content then breaks into 4 columns with smaller thumbnails that represents the older content. Having 4 thumbnails also gives the older content one last chance to be viewed before it's pushed off the homepage and onto an internal category page. 

To prevent clutter, the number of articles on the homepage is limited to 8 not including the feature slider. This allows the design to flow using just the right amount of white space and helps to create balance, along with making the images and text the focal point.

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The category and post pages were high priority in making this site design work. The overall UX as well as the readability of both short and long articles was the focus when designing the page layouts. It was crucial that a delicate balance was given between displaying visuals that were easy on the eye with article legibility.

A simple 3 column design was chosen for the category page so that visitors had a lot to choose from without being overpowered with choice. 

As for the post page shown above, you can see a simple and clear type layout making it very easy to focus on the writing, with little to no distractions, while still allowing the site to feature a sidebar widget space for advertising. Back/Next buttons were also placed at the bottom to encourage users to flip through articles cleanly without the need to click in and out of category pages - to engage longer site visits. Large share buttons were also placed at the bottom of the page to encourage viralility.    

The logo design for the mag had to not only communicate the raw artistic edge that embodied the brands identity and target audience, it also needed to be memorable, recognisable and scalable. 

Working with the base of a simple modern sans serif the 'R' was chosen to be the focal point of this bold type. After a variety of sketches where I experimented with letter curls and sharp edges I ended up removing the length of the first leg of the 'R' which not only helps to draw they eye in but also creates an instantly recognisable mark which could be used standalone. Added textures and a small tear line also add to the overall aesthetic creating a raw and imperfect edge matching the brands dynamic.