The Denver Post
I liked the centerpiece “House Rules” because of the colors and how the gray fades down from dark to light; it makes the graphic really stand out. I like the play on words with ‘House Rules’ and the Jack and Ace card shown to emphasize that. I also like how the colors of the card backs matches the masthead rule in a slightly more subdued way. It is also unique because instead of a picture, they use a graphic of cards and poker chips so you can quickly identify this story is about gambling/casinos. If they had just used a picture of a casino, I think the centerpiece would have been bland.
The News Journal
I love this centerpiece because of how the eagle’s wing frames the statistics that go along with the story. If you look at it closely, it is almost as if the eagle’s wing is forming a bracket shape to emphasize the information within it. It’s angular shape also complements the softer shape of the Delaware graphic; the graphic has gentler, curvier edges and the contrast makes it stand out. Again, I like how The News Journal matched the blue of the sky with the blue of the masthead rule. It helps guide the readers eye from the top of the page right to the beautiful image of the eagle.
Out of all the centerpieces I looked at, this is by far my favorite. The way the black and gold in the square contrasts really makes this story pop. I think the whole package is wonderful as well. I like how the designer put the statue eyes/head of King Tut on the top, where a human head would be, the reconstruction of the body in the middle and the actual mummified feet on the bottom. Looking at it from a slight distance, you can see how it actually follows the linear shape of the human body. I also like how they show a picture of the mummified head, as well as a graphic, and explains certain things about the pharaoh’s body in light-colored bodies. I think it was also clever how the pasta in the top right of the corner matches the goldish hue of King Tut’s statue.
West Hawaii Today
I think this centerpiece is brilliant because it truly expresses the feeling of frustration: the spilled coffee, the tense hand crushing the cup, the slow trickle of coffee to the floor. You can almost hear the sighs of the annoyed and the huffs of the exasperated as they get up to grab paper towels. The story is about labeling laws and how they are causing Kona coffee farmers millions of dollars and the leaking of the coffee also represents waste — the waste of time and expenses over bothersome legalities. I also like how the percentage sign is used instead of the word ‘percent’; for some reason, I think this also emphasizes the point. Like the case with the gambling story, I think this picture is done well and in a way that is simple, yet says so much. If you had pictures of top officials in meetings or farmers in their fields, I think it would bog down the story and make it seem like another run-of-the-mill story about finances. The simplicity of the photo intrigues me and makes me want to read more of the story.
There are many things I like about this centerpiece. The main thing is how the yellow toward the background in the picture is mimicked by the lighter yellow of the pull quotes. It makes everything stand out and guides the reader’s eyes down to the meat of the story. I also think the pull-quotes are a nice touch. I think a lot of newspapers are hesitant to use this technique because it is not seen often, but I think that’s is a mistake. It sets the paper apart from others. While brackets are usually used to denote something not important, I think the brackets bordering this story make it stand out. It’s almost as they are the equivalent of a giant red arrow screaming “read me!” The dropped “S” beginning the story also helps break up the gray and help you find the beginning of the story quickly. I also like the timeline under the picture because it gives the reader a snapshot of the rocket’s process. In a side note, I like how a lot of random things on the page like the weather and headers are the same orange as the masthead rule. It makes the little things pop out so you don’t forget about them.
Headlines and Design Working Together
I think the design of the top portion of this page and the way the headline is written all come together beautifully. The headline “all a blur” stands out because it describes the motion of the picture and is in all lowercase letters, almost as if they are downplaying the event to let the picture speak for itself. The blue of the headline is the same blue as some of the people in the photo and it helps your eye pick up the random bits of blue here and there in the blur as well as highlight the only person who you can see clearly. I like how the masthead is written in white to evoke images of snow, and because it is in the middle of the multi-colored blur, it stands out. I also like the elegance of how “winter olympics” is written and the single leaf to pay homage to Canada is above it. I think this is one of the best Olympic design/headline pairing I have seen so far. The flames on the clearly-defined person also emphasize how fast they are going, again tying into the ‘blur’ theme.