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A Redesigned C&EN

by Rudy M. Baum, Editor-in-chief
October 16, 2006 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 84, Issue 42

Your eyes are not deceiving you. You are reading the Oct. 16, 2006, issue of Chemical & Engineering News. The magazine looks completely different from the publication you've grown accustomed to over the past six years because we have entirely redesigned it from cover to cover, giving it a bold new look that conveys the dynamism of the chemical enterprise.

The new design has been more than a year in the making. It was created by Mariana Ochs, the award-winning creative director of modesign in Rio de Janeiro, who was also responsible for the previous redesign of C&EN in 2001. Building on her familiarity with C&EN and its audience, Ochs has freshened the magazine's look, updating it for a wider audience.

C&EN, of course, is the world's premier magazine devoted to the chemical enterprise. The redesign achieves a clean, sophisticated, modern look that we think will appeal to readers and advertisers. While it is a very contemporary design, it still conveys the fundamental seriousness of C&EN as the newsmagazine of the chemical world.

The typography and layout of the pages in the new design invite busy readers into stories. The Freight body text by typographer Joshua Darden is very readable and has been customized by Darden for C&EN to include the range of special characters, symbols, and Greek letters required for conveying technical information. The Benton Sans display type for headlines and other trim offers a strong contrast to the Freight, making pages dynamic and interesting.

"The resulting design balances the boldness of the type with floating hairline rules and plenty of white space around the headlines—an unexpected and elegant combination," Ochs says. "For a slightly younger and more up-to-date look, colors are cleaner and brighter.

"Another fresh touch is the centering of headlines, which, combined with left-aligned text, creates a lot of movement and white space," Ochs continues. "The overall look, however, is still very organized, due to a modular grid, clear hierarchy within the pages, and the use of extremely readable text families."

An important change that jumps off the cover is adoption of "C&EN" as the official logo of the magazine. Chemical & Engineering News will almost certainly always be the name of the official organ of the American Chemical Society. However, we wanted to develop a strong, clear brand identity for the redesigned cover of the magazine, and the C&EN logo does just that.

You might also notice that the magazine has a slightly different shape. The old design was a magazine that measured 10 7/8 by 8 inches; the new design measures 10½ by 8¼ inches. This change allows C&EN to be printed on the newest, most modern press at Brown Printing Co. in Waseca, Minn.; it also reduces the amount of paper used in printing C&EN.

A project of this magnitude requires the efforts of a large team of people. Ochs and her collaborators at modesign, especially designer Gabriella Turbiani, have been working for months on the prototype and then the templates used to make up the pages. Deputy Editor-in-Chief Pamela Zurer, Managing Editor A. Maureen Rouhi, Assistant Managing Editor Robin Giroux, Art Directors Nathan Becker and Robin Braverman, and Associate Designer Yang Ku have been intimately involved in every step of the process from the first redesign memo to creating this first issue in the new design. Senior Editor for Editing & Production Janet Dodd, Production & Imaging Manager Brandon Houston, Lead Digital Production Specialist Renee L. Zerby, and Senior Digital Production Associate Krystal E. King did a lot of the technical heavy lifting to ensure that computers talked to each other and pages could be transmitted to our printer.

C&EN Online also has been redesigned to reflect the changes in the print edition. Visual Designer Tchad Blair and Production Manager Luis Carrillo have done a tremendous job introducing these changes.

The entire staff of C&EN is excited about the magazine's new look. I hope you find it to be as interesting and inviting to read as we do to produce.

Thanks for reading.


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