Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 years ago today

Today I felt compelled to share my findings on Everyday, the website compiles front pages of newspapers from around the world, and today seemed like a great opportunity to analyze the meanings and displays on papers across the nation. I picked out a few that I liked and that I thought were unique and different from the rest.

The Arizona Republic, Phoenix, Ariz.

The Arizona Republic in Phoenix, Ariz., put together one of my favorite fronts of the day. I have a few beefs with it, but overall, I think it is the most unique. Instead of creating an image of the towers with columns of text, like the San Diego Union-Tribune, below, the Republic  created a void, which goes perfectly with their quote-style headline, 'There's a hole in the world.' The only beef I have with the design is the flow of text from one "column" to another. After it creates the void for the first tower, I get confused as to which column I should be reading. For legibility, it should have been three columns of text with the two towers in the middle. I can see the allure of the asymmetry with the type, though.

The San Diego Union-Tribune, San Diego, Calif.

The two twin columns above seem like the easy thing to do, right? I mean, columns naturally look like the buildings. I have to give San Diego some credit, though, because I think the spacing and air to the page is just right.

Sioux City Journal, Sioux City, Iowa

The Sioux City Journal, above, did something different with typography that I don't think does the trick, either. It definitely needs an explainer paragraph on the front saying where the words came from, and, to me, it feels more artsy than actually conveying any journalism whatsoever. It does, however, get a lot of air.

Des Moines Register, Des Moines, Iowa

The Des Moines Register went on a cloning spree and Photoshopped a very literal translation of an image being burned into our eyes. I am inclined to like it if only because it breaks up the monotony of the file plan-crashing-into-the-towers photo. And it is definitely "eye"-catching.

Star-Ledger, Newark, N.J.

Speaking of breaking up the monotony, the Star-Ledger in Newark seemed to think the same thing. Instead of running file images of the attacks, they told the reader, "We do not need to tell you what happened 10 years ago today. You know." I love this unique take on the day, but I could have probably done with a shorter story on the front. It is neat, though, how the writer of the story was the same writer who reported on the attacks 10 years ago.

The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Va.

Ahh, The Virginian-Pilot. Always with the innovations. Even though the front page is very self-explanatory, let me point out a few things. For one, this front is informative. It doesn't show you an image you have already seen, and it doesn't tell you something you already know (well, some you may). It gives you facts, albeit snarky ones (i.e. Number of Osama bin Ladens: 1 —> 0).

West Hawaii Today, Kailua Kona, Hawaii

West Hawaii Today is the only paper I picked that used the file photos of the towers because they went big. They flipped the front page and used the iconic image to speak for itself.Yes, it's an image we have already seen before, but they repurposed it for the anniversary.

These are just my opinions, folks. I haven't spoken to the designers of these papers, and all I know is what I see. However, I do suggest people check out the front pages for themselves on A direct link to today's papers will probably be posted on the site tomorrow, and I will in turn post it here.