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Design and Layout

9 Modern Newspaper Layout Design Tips

Modern Newspaper Layout Design Tips

Modern design styles are often in a state of flux. The list below are nine of the common design styles that are currently being implemented by the professionals. Using them will give your project a clean, stylish look that is sure to be appealing.

Tip #1 - Minimalist Design

Don’t make your newspaper look crowded or too busy. Use lots of white space where you can. Newspapers have always looked crowded in the past, but modern design tends to use more white space, thus giving more importance to the images and text you do have on a page.

To give you an extreme example, imagine an entire page with only a single word in the middle: "Desire." That forces all the attention on that one word and the possible connotations. That might be extreme, but the concept of using more white space and making your newspaper look less crowded is valid. Put more space between images and text. Space text out more, and put more white space between paragraphs, columns, and other text boxes.

Tip #2 - Have Good Color Schemes

Don't use too many colors. That just looks messy. Know what colors go well together and which ones clash. On a newspaper, colors will always print darker than what is on your computer screen so it is important to lighten up your colors. Learn which colors go well together.

Tip #3 - Flat Look

Try not to use 3D effects, bevels, or too many shadows. Those styles went out last decade when they were novelties at the time. It is the flat appearance that looks clean and stylish.

Tip #4 - Grid or Geometric Patterns

Modern design often employs images in a grid or geometric pattern. Again, this gives your project a fresh, clean look with straight lines and easy on the eyes visuals.

Tip #5 - Choose Easy-on-the-Eyes Fonts

Your articles and stories are central to your newspaper design and layout. Don't use fonts that are difficult to read or make out. Use fonts that the eye can pick up on easily and avoid using many different kinds of fonts. Stick with the same font for each of your different text groupings: your main text, your titles, your subtitles, and your headings.

Tip #6 - Stay Consistent in Your Font Sizes

Different sized fonts can be used, but stay consistent. When your body text suddenly gets larger, it has an unconscious impact on your readers. Not only does it look messy, but it creates a visual detraction from the message.

Tip #7 - Alignment Is Essential!

It may seem tedious, but a well-aligned newspaper will standout as being far superior to those that are not aligned properly. Here are some areas of alignment you should consider:

  • Columns — Make sure your columns are the same width and either aligned at the top or the bottom and evenly spaced between themselves.
  • Pictures — Align pictures to each other where you can and to text where appropriate. Always try to show straight lines.
  • Titles — Align titles vertically or horizontally where obvious. Centering titles over columns will also look good.
  • Horizontal and Vertical Spacing — If you have space on the right, make sure there is the exact same amount of space on the left. If you have space between a title and a textbox, make sure that you keep the same spacing between other titles and textboxes.
  • Keep picture aspect ratios — If you need to shrink a picture on only one side only (vertically or horizontally) to make it fit a particular space, don't shrink it. This will only make your picture look fat or skinny instead of natural. Instead, crop it. It is always better to crop the picture to align it than to make an image look unnatural.

Tip #8 - Manage Free Space

Empty space is as important as the space you do use. Leaving large holes in your newspaper design is not wise, but trying to use all the free space up may not be wise either. Well positioned empty or white space can make a newspaper really stand out, look clean, look fresh, and look elegant.

Tip #9 - Get More Tips!

Go to our Design and Layout Center for more tips, tutorials, and guides:

Free Cloud Designer Templates

Our templates are 100% customizable, super user-friendly, and designed specifically to help you create outstanding school newspapers with our free Cloud Designer. Below are a few of the 100s of templates available to you.

4 Column Front Page
4 Column Front Page
11x14
Modern
Free Template
All-purpose front page template. Perfect for community newspapers, political, social, or anything else. Every element can be adjusted to suit your needs.
Wedding Tribune - Front Page
Wedding Tribune - Front Page
11x14
Elegant Wedding
Premium Template
This premium template and hundreds more are available with a Designer PRO subscription (click on this template to learn more). Free Templates on this page do not require a subscription.
School Front Page, 4 Column
School Front Page, 4 Column
11x14
Spacious Style
Premium Template
This premium template and hundreds more are available with a Designer PRO subscription (click on this template to learn more). Free Templates on this page do not require a subscription.
Business Front Page, 3 Column
Business Front Page, 3 Column
11x14
Business Modern
Premium Template
This premium template and hundreds more are available with a Designer PRO subscription (click on this template to learn more). Free Templates on this page do not require a subscription.
Reunion or Birthday Front Page
Reunion or Birthday Front Page
11x14
Special Occasions
Free Template
This can be used for reunions, birthdays, and other special occasions. 100% customizable and features plenty of space for a story about your family.
Front Page, 3 Column
Front Page, 3 Column
11x14
Church Bulletin Template
Premium Template
This premium template and hundreds more are available with a Designer PRO subscription (click on this template to learn more). Free Templates on this page do not require a subscription.