For the first time, Middle Eastern and Arabic design will be the focus of a special session at the 30th annual Society for News Design (SND) Congress, being held in Las Vegas on 7-9 September.
The session devoted to Middle Eastern and Arabic design will feature panelists from the Gulf News daily, the leading English-language paper in the United Arab Emirates; and the UAE based Emarat Al Youm daily, an Arabic-language tabloid format publication. Representatives from the newspapers will discuss the importance of a distinct design for their respective publications.
Gulf News experienced its first redesign in 2003 by Mario Garcia Media, with results that had influence on other local press. Emarat Al Youm was launched in 2005 and has since served as a reference of the tabloid style for other publications. The paper's generous use of graphics and illustrations and its dual-layer outline (featuring briefs and macro-formats in the upper deck and full-length features below) make it dynamic and easy to read. The daily has recently undergone a redesign by Innovation's team.
"The involvement of these two popular publications at the Congress represents a paradigm-shift in the way the Arab world views newspaper design," says Douglas Okasaki, Regional Director for SND in the Middle East and North Africa. "The market for newspapers and magazines in the UAE presents consumers with so much choice and variety that publications must begin to focus to the aesthetics of their product to draw in a larger readership."
"It is important to evaluate and discuss newspaper design in the region," Okasaki continues. "Many newspapers in the Middle East are testaments to the great work being done in their art departments; design is becoming much more professional and mature."
Also featured at the Congress this year will be newspaper designer Tarek Atrissi, who will discuss Arabic culture and typography. Atrissi is an international artist; he was born in Beirut and went on to work in the Netherlands, Qatar, Dubai and the United States, and studied under the likes of design legends Steven Heller, Paula Scher and Stefan Sagmeister.
The Society for News Design Congress will be held on 7-9 September at the Red Rock Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. For the first time SND will share its venue and Congress with the annual conferences of the Associated Press Managing Editors (APME) and the Associated Press Photo Managers (APPM). Registration to the SND Congress will also grant entry into the APME and APPM sessions on 8-10 September.
Now in its 30th year, the Congress debuted in Chicago in 1979. Last year, in Boston, the Congress hosted more than 700 delegates from around the world who took part in a three-day discussion on hard copy and online newspaper design. Future installments are scheduled for Buenos Aires in 2009, Denver in 2010 and St. Louis in 2011.
For more information on the Congress and its speakers and to learn how your organization can host a workshop visit http://www.sndvegas.com/or http://www.snd.org/index.html or contact Bill Gaspard, immediate past president of SND.