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IdN v25n2: Report, Brochure and Catalogue Design — Dull Chore or Satisfyingly Challenging Act?

The ideal layout scenario for any graphic designer is virtual equivalence between the amount of space taken up by text and images. There is one area, however, in which such a goal is almost bound to be unachievable – that of designing reports, brochures and catalogues. Annual reports are by definition data-driven, while brochures and catalogues invariably involve a greater proportion of graphics to text. The point of them is to be attracted by the illustrations, which have to speak louder than words.

On the other hand, much of the data needed for reports can be visually presented by way of tables, charts and other infographics, thus lessening the strain of ploughing through hundreds of words. There is a catch, though: given that annual reports are intended to give shareholders and other interested parties such as journalists and regulators information about the company’s activities and financial performance, it is essential that this information should be 100 percent accurate.


&Larry | Ákos Polgárdi | Albert Ibanyez | Andrés Guerrero | Aneta Lewandowska | Anne-Cécile Manfré | Anqi Li | Backbone Branding | Benson Design Co | blok design | Bravo | Brian Liu | Cacao Design | Cécile Dumetier | Dennis Ventrello | Dina&Solomon | Ermolaev Bureau | Everyday Practice | Fable | Jake Lim | Jamie Bailey | Jesse Ellingson | Krishnapriya Dutta Gupta | Laura (Lin) van Dyk | Maria Rodriguez | Mayra Monobe | METAKLINIKA | Milena Savić | moodley brand identity | MOOI DESIGN | Nonverbal Club | Grottangeles | PLUS X | Premise Design Communications Inc. | Ragne Balteskard | Sensus Design Factory | Serviceplan Campaign | Strategy Creative | Sven Zijderveld | TGIF | The 3rd Age | Total Design | UNKA/Ven Klement | VXLAB | Wedge


160p + 8p cover
160mm (w) x 230mm (h)
4 varying paper stocks
4C process + matt lamination
ISSN (English Edition): 1029 4805
ISSN (Chinese Edition): 1029 4813

Dull Chore or Satisfyingly Challenging Act?

When it comes to brochures and catalogues, their main purpose is to attract potential customers or collaborative companies, to which end lots of pictures of imminently available products are an inducement. Text is restricted to basic information such as size and functionality, as well as sales incentives including those that enhance the company’s brand image. Rather than clutter the pages with yet more illustrations, many designers find that a well-designed index is a more practical way to go.

Whatever is called for, the fundamental design rules apply. It pays to make a close study of all the material to be included before deciding on how to approach it. This process may take longer with the genre under review, but attention to detail should be paramount. Probably, when working on this kind of material, it will pay to take greater care than usual over designing a grid for the layout so that readers can be led by the hand in terms of optimal viewing.

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