A Before and After Case Study

Dr. Miller's Ad Before and After

I was asked by a client to re-design a print ad laid out by someone else.

The original layout (above, left) was cluttered and confused. The ad, for an author’s book signing events in upscale communities in Los Angeles County, was going to appear in a local cultural magazine. What was needed was a visual solution that supported the specific message (from Nazi Holocaust victim to survivor to thriving psychologist and author), was informative, and that appealed to the intended audience.

The original raised a lot of concerns: it lacked structure, hierarchy, a relevant color scheme, a headline, appropriate type and typographic design, proportion contrasts and visual “heroes”. Additionally, it included a poorly contrived re-creation of the Barnes & Noble brand identity, which is really not appropriate. The actual identity should have been used.

I designed my make-over from the ground up. I began with a formal structure to unify the various elements and imposed a symmetrical balance. Through hieratic scaling and isolation I made the author and her book the heroes of the design. They are now the focal point of and the visual entrance into the design.

I created a real headline from a block of text in the original and reduced the number of fonts to two, scaling the various text to appropriate sizes. I incorporated a color scheme that was neutral, warm and stabilizing, and which didn’t compete with the text. I revised the entire layout to establish a natural flow of information and create an orderly presentation. The result is a simpler layout that is easy to understand. The ad is now unified, appealing and relevant to the author, the book and the intended audience. The perceived value is increased.

Dr. Erica Miller web site.

Alvalyn Lundgren

Alvalyn Lundgren is the founder and design director at Alvalyn Creative, an independent practice near Thousand Oaks, California. She creates visual branding, publications and books for business, entrepreneurs and authors. She is the creator of Freelance Road Trip — a business roadmap program for creative freelancers. Contact her for your visual branding, graphic and digital design needs. Join her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and subscribe to her free monthly newsletter.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. The makeover is a far superior product! It doesn’t offend the eye, draws you in and the headline is very effective at making you want to read more. Very nice!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Close Menu

Get tips

Subscribe to the Eye Level Newsletter and get a FREE color guide. You’ll also receive updates on new lessons, tutorials, and more!