The Mario Blog
03.09.2017—2am
Inspiration is everywhere

A visit with a designer here in New York City, a page design from the past and the start of a design career.

Inspiration comes from a variety of sources. For designers, it is visual images. It could be a neon sign as we enter a bar or night club (I am always inspired by  my favorite New York City  jazz club, Birdland, where neon signs are as present and colorful as the sounds of genuine jazz), or an old chocolate shop in Brussels (check out Elizabeth’s) , or that paper napkin where your glass of bubbly sits at a New York City bar/restaurant , Balthazar’s,  which has a great logo—and good food.

 

 

I had a visitor this week, Sergio Fraire, art director for New York City’s Spanish language daily, El Diario.  Originally from Mexico, Sergio came armed with books that he wanted me to autograph for him, but he also turned to a page in a 1992 book ,News by Design, written by the designer, artist and visual thinker, Robert Lockwood, a colleague for whom I have great respect and who would speak at our Poynter Institute seminars I had no idea Lockwood’s book had been translated to Spanish, with the title El Diseño de la Noticia.

The page that Sergio turned to included one of my projects of long ago in Holland, the Emmer Courant

 Such memories to see that page.  Take a look here:

I remember that for this paper, one of those huge broadsheets so popular in Europe in the late 80s and early 90s, I created a 16-column grid that would allow the design to take little visual detours with a narrow column.

“That was it for me, Mario, ” Sergio told me as he sipped a hot espresso in my New York apartment.

“I will always remember this page as a major inspiration. I said to myself, this is what I want to do. I want to be a designer. Here I am, still doing it.”

I am grateful for such testimonies.  Sergio and I looked at the page and both realized that this page circa 1990 still has power today: the use of a large photo as a powerful Center of Visual Impact, the modular positioning of text and images. Yep. It would still work today, timeless.

I added that there would be a digital version of the story, with a good video of the dancing scenes, and audio for the music.

Indeed, the job of the designer today is not simply to make the page beautiful, to use a grid as a design element and to make it all come together in a visually pleasing manner.  Today, the visual storyteller takes over, works with the writers to enhance the story and to make sure that the user experience is the best, while also making it visually pleasant.

 

Speaking Engagements Coming Up

I will be speaking at these three events in the weeks ahead:


WAN-IFRA Middle East Conference 2017
March 14
Dubai
United Arab Emirates

My topic will be about the importance of Sponsored Content, with emphasis on the recent launch of the Gulf NewsREACH by Gulf News project.

Mario García will talk about Visual Storytelling in the Digital Age. He will discuss the state of the media today, with emphasis on how we tell stories visually on mobile devices, the role of print and the importance of email newsletters and sponsored content to find new ways of promoting content and monetizing your operation.

For more information: https://events.wan-ifra.org/events/wan-ifra-middle-east-conference-2017

Mobile Media Culture in the Americas: The Digital Divide

March 23
Miami, Florida
USA

I will be one of the speakers/panelists in this conference, a full day of interactive analysis of how information and communication technologies—specifically, mobile media—affect Latin American and Caribbean societies. How are mobile media bridging divides? Is that bridge strengthening democracy, social mobility, and economic equality and supporting growth and development? How has innovation changed the newsroom and news media landscape in Latin America and the Caribbean? What is being done to support enhanced journalistic coverage of our hemisphere?

For more informationhttps://mmca17.splashthat.com/

Webinar for Crowdynews: open to all

March 29, 9 a.m. EST

The brief: What trends should every publisher embrace in 2017? According to Dr. Mario Garcia, top-of-mind should include digital storytelling, email newsletters, and sponsored content.

Mario Garcia, world renown storyteller, editorial designer, and digital strategy consultant, will share practical steps news organizations can embrace to offset the disruptive forces rocking the news industry. During this 60-minute webinar, Mario will introduce a concept and then open the floor for a discussion on implementation and best practices sharing stories of those who are realizing success.”

In this webinar, Dr. Garcia will cover how to: 

1) Go where your readers are: mobile. How do you create a more visually compelling and interactive experience for your mobile users while facing the challenge of a smaller screen size?

2) Be the source of their news – starting with their inbox every morning. How do you create a personalised, informative, and indispensable newsletter for your audience? 

3) Serve your readers with high quality, non-obstructive ads or face ad blockers. How do you organize your newsroom to offer sponsored content while not compromising editorial integrity?

To register, go here:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5146625194690261761

VOZ Media Conference

April 6
Vienna, Austria

I will be the keynote speaker for this event, my presentation titled The important role of print in the digital age. This presentation presents a state of the media today, with emphasis on how we tell stories visually on mobile devices, the role of print and the importance of email newsletters and sponsored content to find new ways of promoting content and monetizing your operation.

For more information: http://www.voez.at

 

TheMarioBlog post #2584

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Contact us with speaking requests, questions or to discuss a project.