Yes, okay, the web is swell and neat. But print? Print is awesome.
As a communications designer, print design is my first love. Holding the labor of love in my hands. Admiring the vibrancy of the colors. Feeling the texture of the paper. Smelling the ink. The typography and graphic elements I spent hours creating and carefully aligning are there in real time and space. I can read it, admire it, write on it and share it without an Internet connection, electricity or batteries.
That's why I love print. But why should you love print?
Well-designed print is immediate and can’t be ignored.
What's more immediate than a well-designed print publication? There's no scrolling to get your bearings. Your eyes automatically zoom in to specific features and zoom out to take in the entire spread–from headlines to images, captions and callouts.
Stop staring into the light already!
More than 86 percent of Americans use a computer at work. Maybe I'm unusual, but after eight hours or more of screen time in the office, coming home to a magazine newly arrived in the mail is a supreme pleasure. Heck, I eagerly flip through coupon circulars.
Print is tactile.
Print is type and image thoughtfully arranged on paper that can be rough, smooth, textured or creamy. I generally refrain from licking, but, depending on the lushness of the stock or aqueous coating, the temptation is great.
Shelf life. Shelf image.
Print validates human endeavor. I'm not advocating clutter, but The Great Gatsby, Moby Dick, The Brothers Karamazov or even National Geographic or (especially)Print magazine don't belong on a Nook or iPad. It is only right and proper for them to collect dust on your bookshelf or bedside table. Print endures. It's authoritative. (And your friends will be impressed.)
Here are a few handy links if you’re in need of further persuasion of the awesomeness of print or just want to share the love. Because, from where I sit, print lust is alive and well.
- The Power of Print (campaign) [Ed. update September 3rd 2014: the link powerofmagazines.com is now dead]
- Print Is Big (campaign)
- “Small Presses Take Brooklyn” – New York Times
- Graphic Exchange, an online community promoting print design
- "Favorite Book Cover Designs of 2012" – New York Times
- Tips for Better Ideas, an advertisement through which the elemental joy of print shines