Why We Did It
By Jacob H. Fries, managing editor
days, when a newspaper rolls out a new design, it’s usually to obscure
the fact that the paper is cutting back on content, pages and staffing.
Here at The Inlander, we actually have the opposite problem:
We’re growing. Our reach in the community, our circulation, our
advertising, our staffing and our journalism — they’re all bigger and
stronger than ever. And so we wanted to update the look and content of
the paper to reflect the exciting things going on here in the Inland
Some of the features you’ll notice:
- More news reporting. Weekly newspapers have historically acted as a
supplement to dailies and TV, but with those media shrinking, local,
independent weeklies like The Inlander have increasingly become
the go-to place for in-depth reporting and context. You’ll see we’re
devoting more space than ever to news and have added some new features
into that section, too.
- Expanded food coverage. We’ve added pages to our food section to
accommodate more news about our local restaurants, as well as the latest
developments in the world of cuisine. If you’re looking for a place to
eat, we’ll be giving you more ideas than ever as we tell you about new
restaurants and check in on old standbys.
- A guide to the best local events. We know our readers use our calendar
to plan their week, so we have added pages highlighting what we believe
are the week’s best offerings. You’ll also find in our events sections a
rotating feature highlighting places where you can sing karaoke, play
trivia, dance and much more.
- Integrated online features. We are everywhere — on Facebook, Twitter,
Tumblr, on your smartphone and in your email — and we integrated some of
those features into the paper to help you stay connected.
newspaper inhabits a pivotal place in a community — it’s a living thing
that is always changing with the times, and we hope our readers will
continue to help us grow.
us what you like about the new design, tell us what you hate, tell us
how we can better serve you. A community needs a newspaper, and a
newspaper needs a community, and we value your feedback.
Please send your comments to [email protected].
How We Did It
By Chris Bovey, art director
In redesigning The Inlander for
the first time in 10 years, we started by listing the aspects of our
design that we had come to hate. Near the top of the list were the
brackets, which were everywhere — on our cover and every other page
inside. They had fallen out of favor and not just with us. I once got a
reader’s email showing 20 examples of companies using brackets in their
advertising and comparing their use with Portlandia’s “put a bird on it” idea.
So we started over. Blank slate. We
studied other newspapers and magazines, borrowed what we liked, threw
out a ton and, through trial and error, tried to create a design that
highlighted our content: our articles, our great photography and our
Many of the choices we made, you’ll hardly notice. Others, we think, will make a huge difference.
- Hit the road, Interstate. We had used a font called Interstate since
our last major redesign in 2002. It was everywhere from headlines to
captions and sidebars. Even our logo was in Interstate. So, in choosing a
new font, we wanted something more modern, that kept in line with our
established brand. After countless hours of font browsing, we landed on
Gotham. Interestingly, this same font was used by Barack Obama’s
campaign and has been called the linchpin of his entire campaign
imagery, not that that factored into our decision. It just seemed to
- Give me some
elbow room. I love our paper, but sometimes it felt a little cluttered.
So we added more white space. This makes the page feel airier and
hopefully draws you in. You will notice this mostly between the ads and
our stories. Kind of like your neighbors, you love ’em, but sometimes
you both need a little space to flourish.
- Don’t box me in. Our photo captions were trapped in bright red boxes
that competed for your first glance on every story and, at times,
distracted from our award-winning images. So now you will find those
little guys tucked under the bottom right corner of photos.
- Show me the way. With the red caption boxes gone, we wanted to use the
color red as an accent helping you navigate from page to page, section
to section. Red generally marks the starting places — the beginnings of
sections and stories.
We’re excited about the results, but if you have suggestions, send them my way: [email protected].