25 03 2013

The dust has settled and we’re officially in our Spring attire at the San Mateo Daily Journal.

We couldn’t shut the door and turn the page on the Winter though, without first looking at our coverage area’s best athletes … and as it is the case every year for the four, we’re looking at another graphic series by yours truly. This one in particular, turned out to be the most consistent I’ve done, I think. Good concept. Good execution.

I give you the 2012-13 SMDJ Ticket Series (as always, click for a larger view):

Daily Journal ticket series

We can go through the process of selecting the Athletes of the Season some other time … and a couple of races were actually very, very close. But for now, the process of building the tickets and then the presentations for each athlete was a fun challenge.

I had been fresh out of themes for a while now. We had done cereal, money, video games, the list goes on and on. Last Winter, we just went full on graphics, full page monsters, no real illustration artwork — just picture and type. The one big thing was the addition of the All-Daily Journal Teams … and those actually wound up being the coolest parts of the graphic.

But this year, I got an idea while walking through my hometown mall — in a sports specialty shop, I saw the T-shirt below and thought “hey, why not? We haven’t tried that.” I snapped a picture of it with my phone and started looking up ideas.

Ticket insp

I loved the 3-dimensional feel of the Pablo Sandoval ticket — that was my mind objective when putting together my own. As I scoped through the various season ticket packages by various teams (which are actually harder to find than you may think), the one I thought would be simplest to duplicate, and therefore more efficient for the 5-day run, was Stanford’s. I loved so many things about Cincinnati’s and Atlanta’s — but there is a lot more photography work done with those. And, as we’ve discussed here before, our resources can be very hit or miss with photos. Once we selected our Athletes, our photo well looked like this:

Picture 5

All five of those photos work well for daily sports coverage — but not so much for graphical illustrations. But as a page designer, thou shalt not whine. Just work. The Boys’ Basketball Player of the Year is Michael Smith, a baller from El Camino High School in South San Francisco. And of the five photos, his was by far the toughest to work with. But we made it work and wound up with this:

Michael Smith basketball El Camino

OK, some of the more immediate issues: • The Size: In wanting the presentation to be dynamic, I went four columns across (8 inches) and a whole 13.25 inches high … • The All-Daily Journal Teams: needed to fit in this schematic. So, originally, I was going to fit the team in that space you seen at the bottom of the page … much like what we did last year. But, with the adage of the other tickets (mostly used to filled the vertical space), the actual story copy would have needed to fit in a really awkward shape to the right of the illustration. After giving up on that, I went with the All-DJ on the side … and to my complete happiness, it fit perfectly. So, Michael’s is above … Drew Edelman’s is here:


So, you can see what I meant by four columns — meaning, we left one on the right for other coverage. Those were days 1 and 2 … soccer was a bit of a challenge for days 3 and 4. One, the soccer field, it’s not one solid color — green, lots of blacks, so the copy on the bottom had to be bolded and a green background took a lot away from the futbol pitch feel. But, the tickets looked great.

Segre Player of the Year

Did I mention I wrote three of these stories too? Yeah. I did. My favorite was Gianna Rosati’s. I’m a big fan of hers. Girl’s got skills. Click below, it’ll take you the story.

Picture 3

OK. I’m tired. But this was fun. Always is. But, I need a vacation.




One response

25 03 2013
Mother Theresa

AWESOME graphics, Julio! Well done 🙂

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