Recalling the rise and fall of The Grid
But often, when a publication closes down, explanations are few and some of the texture and background of its existence simply vanishes. Staff moves on, collective memory is lost, readers accommodate themselves to its disappearance.
That's why it is so good to see an interview by the Society for News Design with former creative director Vanessa Wyse. who is now associate art director at the Globe and Mail. Here are some of the things she said. about The Grid's vision, its storytelling sense and its evolution:
"We focused on “Street-level” as a starting point and branched out from there. Most of the staff came from magazine backgrounds so we basically used all of the magazine storytelling tools we knew and loved and applied it to a newspaper format. This strategy created a kind of hybrid publication with the best of both worlds. Utilizing relevant stories, large documentary photography, clean and contemporary design, loads of entry points and graphics, and a fun editorial tone throughout the magazine."
"A few months before we closed the publication, The Grid scaled down its physical size making it even closer to an over-sized magazine. I could even bleed images, which was very exciting.
"When we decided to make the change, it was very tempting to try and redesign the entire publication. My team and I played around with a few attempts, new fonts, grids etc. But the truth is that The Grid was never broken. The design decisions we had made originally still held up. We just had to rethink the editorial message slightly and change the size. Freshen it up a bit. So that is what we did."