Good Design is, Well, Good Design

What does Shakespeare, the gays, and a dying form of design with nothing left to lose have in common? A lot actually, but this designer makes it work in a perculular  way. 


Gather around my rather small but impressive home bar, while I concoct a cocktail that is equal parts naturally smart Shakespeare, impeccable gridded newsprint, and near perfect The Onion irony. Stir well and serve over ice. Then let get real, ignore all that, and just crack a beer and settle in.

Wondering through the vast pit that is the internet, I came across a great piece of work by a graphic designer working mostly out of New York. The project is called Outcast and is an editorial design created back in 2015. It's creator's name is Hieu Tran. His design is one remarkable case which all newspaper designers should look to for insperation. Having started my career off in Newspapers, I have come to appreciate designs that can do as much as possible when everything is working against them. Word counts, ungodly. White space, not financially responsible. Photos, mostly blurry and taken on some editor's flip phone. This design is a perfect example of what newspapers should strive for. 

What hit me at first glance was the simple yet well-executed lines of work. Domaine, National, Newzald were the fonts used in this project. To me, they were all simple enough but strickly rigid with only a touch of a humanist pizzaz. After reading about the project, I fell in love with the concept behind it. A newspaper based on a play written by Shakespeare, reading as if it was an Onion article. It had a serious message to convey without being pretentious enough to be written off as, well, preachy.

The lesson To be learned here is when you stick to a well-executed asthetic that is proven to work, you will get just that. Add a dash of smart humor and you elevate your design to the next level. Just as this project did, winning several awards such as the YG Award 2015, AIGA Blue Ridge Flux Student Design Competition, Communication Arts Typography Annual 7, SPD-U Spotlight Gold Medalist, and 2015 ADAA Semifinalist in Print Communications. 

If you would like read a short interview with the designer about his work, look no further. It's here.