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The Synergist Magazine Redesign

Challenge – AIHA, a nonprofit devoted to protecting worker health, publishes The Synergist, a monthly magazine with news and information on the industrial hygiene profession. In celebration of the association’s 75th anniversary and in response to member feedback, AIHA was interested in creating a new look and feel for the publication through a magazine redesign. AIHA wanted to ensure that the new design was engaging and would separate The Synergist from journals published by the association. They wanted to capture the importance and relevance of their content through design and communicate to their audience the value of the industry and breadth of its reach.

Solution – Bates Creative worked with the AIHA editorial team to develop a reimagined look and feel for the magazine, taking into account the new features AIHA wished to include in the publication to meet member feedback. The design is intended to be clean and well organized – reflecting some of the basic principles of the industry. In addition, Bates Creative wanted to be more creative in the selection of imagery and illustrations to tell the stories and to not be so literal in application. Introducing custom illustration, abstract photography and close crop compositions allowed the content to come to life. Most dramatically, Bates Creative developed a cover strategy based on textures that could be considered ambiguous but interesting and engaging in composition for the reader. These close crop images evoke the tone of the story but don’t need to literally depict the subject matter. The exciting new design gives the industry a refreshing visual language that is professional, detailed and inspired by the importance of the subject matter while being progressive and new.

“At the outset, our primary goal was a more modern design with a cleaner, less-cluttered look. The design Bates ultimately created achieves that objective and more. Bates provided us with a new cover strategy and style guide that help us create attention-grabbing covers and feature spreads even on our limited budget. The new fonts and page layouts were just what the magazine needed.”

– Ed Rutkowski, Editor in Chief, The Synergist, AIHA

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