We were asked to undertake a comprehensive redesign of the alumni magazine for the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. The process started with conversations between our staff and theirs. Along with the Mendoza editorial team, we spoke with the dean, faculty, staff, students, and alumni. Through focus groups and a readership survey we learned that Mendoza alumni overwhelmingly responded to stories about people – and that more than a few alums had never heard of Mendoza Business Magazine! We had our work cut out for us.
The new table of contents signals a re-organized publication, dividing content into three distinct sections: news and faculty research (Vita); feature stories (Features); and alumni profiles, opinions and class notes (Family). Feature stories and profiles rely heavily on photography while faculty research and opinion pieces are generally interpreted with conceptual illustration.
Skelton Design created a new identity and website for KublerWirka, a consulting firm that works in partnership with nonprofit organizations to help advance education and culture. Our assignment included a new mark, a full stationery set, a mobile friendly website, and an identity guidelines package. The new K/W identity system – a clean, contemporary design with a bright green accent – signals a strategic shift from a traditional institutional approach to a fresh, modern outlook.
Craig Frazier’s conceptual illustrations added just the right note of intelligence and humor to key content pages of the site.
We gave NURSING FOR/UM, the University of Maryland’s School of Nursing alumni magazine, a modern, humanistic look that accurately represents today’s nurses in the field, with an eye toward an open, accessible content structure and layout. The redesigned magazine has an editorial and visual focus on people – those they train and those they help.
SD was selected to design Mark Dion, Judy Pfaff, Fred Wilson: The Order of Things. The exhibition catalogue highlights each artist’s work and juxtaposes their installations with Dr. Barnes’s "ensemble" approach to display. The book includes a poster that folds down to a dust jacket (not shown), presenting details from the final installations in an orderly grid.
For the Barnes Foundation’s first show of contemporary art in 90 years, Ellsworth Kelly: Sculpture on the Wall, we were commissioned to design the wall graphics, exhibit brochures, postcards, opening invitations, and a comprehensive book about the exhibition's centerpiece, Sculpture for a Large Wall, a massive 65-foot-long wall sculpture.
We also created a book to mark the historic relocation of the Barnes to downtown Philadelphia, telling the story from its origins in Merion, PA to the realization of its new campus. Contents include blueprints, architectural renderings, historical and modern photos, and landscape designs – all celebrating the extraordinary achievements of the museum's founder, Albert C. Barnes. To celebrate the building's opening, we designed invitations and a 56-page commemorative program for gala events.
In addition to the temporary exhibition materials we have created for the Barnes, which includes their opening exhibition, Ensemble, covering the history of the institution, we have also produced program materials for schools, teachers, adult courses and public cultural events.
Skelton Design has worked with various divisions of Hopkins Medicine for over 25 years, including the design and art direction of Hopkins Medicine magazine for nearly 10 years. Other Hopkins Medicine clients have included the Wilmer Eye Institute, Brady Urological Institute, and the School of Public Health. Recent projects include:
• Identity and website for Johns Hopkins Medicine Philanthropy Institute; a forward thinking institute seeking to elevate the profession of medical development.
• Breakthrough, a research journal for the Center for Innovative Medicine, and a branded website for the CIM
• Leap, a magazine for the Division of Rheumatology
• A 5-year progress report for the Johns Hopkins Brain Science Institute (BSi) along with a new website and visual identity
Johns Hopkins Carey Business School’s alumni magazine, formerly known as ONE, has changed its name to Carey Business. A reader’s survey determined that alumni and friends of Carey would feel more connected to the magazine if it bore the school’s name at the top of the masthead. We were asked to rework the cover nameplate and revise some departments, while retaining the overall design direction of previous issues (which, by the way, received high marks from readers). The Fall 2015 issue was a UCDA Winner (University & College Designers Association).
We also design Changing Business, a journal documenting faculty research at Carey. In each issue, a new illustrator interprets the provocative range of research topics carried on by Carey faculty.
SD created a new brand identity and logo system for Tufts University using the results of extensive marketing research to inform its direction and implementation. The new identity system has been adopted for all university communications and marketing, including undergraduate recruiting materials and a campaign for the School of Engineering.
The undergraduate admissions viewbook was conceived as a magazine-like publication, singling out some of Tufts most outstanding programs and treating topics as short articles, each with a unique photographic style and editorial approach.
For a brochure on financial aid, we assigned the Tufts campus photographer to travel across the country to shoot family portraits that accompany interviews with the school's financial aid recipients.
York College enlisted Skelton Design as a communications partner to convey its brand, qualities, advantages, and value proposition to prospective undergraduate students through an integrated and strategic admissions marketing campaign. The overall theme of the campaign, From Day One, captures the all-encompassing and life changing experience of attending York College. It expresses the College’s commitment to student success that begins as soon as the student arrives, and continues through graduation.
The centerpiece of the admissions campaign, the award winning viewbook, conveys themes and messages through student experiences and testimonials – personal stories of opportunity, discovery, and success made possible by their college experience.
SD designed the Phillips identity system to be applied to all marketing materials, including visitor, fundraising, and exhibition information, and to the museum magazine. The Phillips Collection logo does not attempt to mimic Duncan Phillips’ painterly aesthetic. Instead, it strives for a simple, refined modernism consistent with the exemplary nature of the museum while also hinting at the art deco style reminiscent of the period of its founding.
Exhibition books designed for the Phillips include Morandi: Master of Modern Still Life; Pousette Dart: Predominantly White Paintings; Robert Ryman: Variations + Improvisations; David Smith Invents; and Degas: Dancers at the Barre: Point and Counterpoint. Each book's design evokes the essence of the artists' unique vision and aesthetic.
Beginning in 2005, SD designed every issue of The Phillips Collection Magazine, the museum's popular quarterly, until print publication ended in 2014.
“Creatives at Work” highlights young alumni success at MICA. The gatefold brochure includes examples of alums who “found success in traditional creative careers and invent new roles for themselves as creative makers.”
“Time & Space” is what artists need to take risks, to push themselves, try things, and collaborate with others. MICA asked us to design a brochure to raise awareness and funds for their new Graduate Studio Center, a six-floor industrial space being transformed into studios, galleries, seminar rooms, lounges, auditorium, café, and more.
When SD redesigned McDaniel’s website, our top priority was attracting new students. The home page, an interactive montage of photos and headlines, entices students to stay engaged and find out more. The modular design is updated constantly to reflect current activities, events, and college news. Primary goals were the creation of a front door to the site to attract students and the streamlining of interior pages to make reading and navigation more efficient. Significantly, the site transitions seamlessly to mobile platforms.
McDaniel uses their innovative "McDaniel Plan" to recruit prospective students. We designed the viewbook and admissions brochures to communicate a hands-on, customized, and personal curriculum plan that allows flexibility in choosing courses and majors, small class settings, faculty mentors, and a rigorous and challenging learning experience. A series of mailed admissions incentives include “Expect the Exceptional,” “We Can Change Your Life,” and “Choose Your Direction.”
We initiated the design of McLive!, a bi-annual listing of events held at McDaniel, to highlight music, visual arts, and other public programs.
Our assignment to design a new logo and graphic identity system for St. Mary’s College of Maryland began by meeting with marketing consultants, communications, development and alumni relations staff, faculty members, and the president. Discussions included the incorporation of imagery evoking the college’s location on the St. Mary’s river and content establishing their status as a public honors college. The resulting identity guide demonstrates proper use of the new logo and seal, approved color palette and type families, and gives examples of stationery and publications that correctly use the system.
In redesigning The Mulberry Tree, St. Mary’s alumni magazine, we located a drawing of the historic mulberry tree in the college’s archives and used it as an element of the redesigned nameplate. St. Mary’s history, dating back to 1840, and its location adjacent to St. Mary’s City, Maryland’s original capital through the 17th century, precipitated our choice of a typographic style informed by early American poster design. The redesign won a CASE Gold award.
The idea of illustrating a Great Books author on each cover of The College, St. John’s alumni magazine, originated in 2001 when we first redesigned the publication. Overwhelmingly popular among alumni, the covers were updated in 2012 to signal a more modern sensibility. By commissioning a different illustrator for each issue and adding color, the new cover treatment allowed the editorial voice to come through, often alluding to a thematic concept. The Fall 2015 issue was a UCDA Winner (University & College Designers Association).
SD has also designed an institutional identity, admissions, development and alumni affairs materials for St. John’s. The typographic approach of the college logo reflected the St. John's ethos – grounded in the classics while adhering to its own distinctive educational vision.
Skelton Design redesigned The Bryn Mawr School’s alumnae magazine, Communiqué. The Bryn Mawr School is a private all-girls K-12 school, with a coed preschool, located on a beautiful 26-acre Baltimore campus. The cheerful vibrancy of the magazine’s design reflects the school’s personality and brand.
The Bryn Mawr School mails Communiqué to over 1,500 alumnae and distributes copies to current and inquiring parents. The bulk of the magazine consists of short profiles of top faculty members and more in-depth stories about successful alumnae.
When the Walters Art Museum changed its name from the Walters Art Gallery, SD participated in discussions with the director of the museum, administrators, board members and other constituents before designing a new logo and a comprehensive identity system for the Walters. To express the wide scope of the museum's collection, and also to introduce a dynamic element into the identity system, the new logo includes an interchangeable set of images inside a circular disk. Unveiled along with the opening of an extensive renovation in 2002, the identity was initially applied to wayfinding signage, a members magazine, stationery, and a website.
We recently completed an admissions portfolio for Lancaster Country Day School, an independent, college-preparatory school. LCDS combines a rigorous curriculum with a supportive and encouraging faculty to ensure that every preschool through 12th grade student receives the best education available. The colorful portfolio, targeted primarily to parents, contains a viewbook, two divisional brochures — one for early childhood and lower school, and one for middle and upper school — along with information about financial assistance, visiting and applying. The portfolio was a UCDA Winner (University & College Designers Association).
Seeking an updated look to enhance alumni engagement, Messiah College came to us for a comprehensive redesign of their alumni magazine, The Bridge. The redesign needed to signal a revitalized energy at the college while remaining true to the mission and values that Messiah alumni continue to expect from their alma mater.
Through the use of ample white space, full-page photography and illustration, and headlines set in large display type, the feature stories are clearly and quickly distinguished from news sections. Layouts have been simplified and restructured and a consistent system of typographic hierarchy has been introduced to give the overall publication a clear and consistent visual identity.
SD designed a comprehensive, coordinated communications program for the GW Law School that includes publications and extensive website and e-communications templates. The work demonstrates how the school’s location in Washington DC is an invaluable resource for learning and professional experience. A highlight of the website was an interactive, illustrated map of Washington DC that guides students to urban residential neighborhoods and points them to government agencies that offer legal internships and employment.
The program’s visual design includes a “GW Law” mark that is distinctive yet compatible with the overarching identity of the George Washington University. The project was produced in collaboration with a Baltimore marketing firm.
For the design of the undergraduate viewbook and an extensive package of supplemental admissions publications for the University of Pennsylvania, SD used details of Penn’s classic architecture on the covers, evoking ivy league prestige and a sense of the university’s history. Students were selected to shed light on relevant viewbook topics: choosing a major, participating in activities, living in Philadelphia, joining the community through dorm life, and excelling in athletics. The design of supplemental brochures encouraged prospective students to visit and to learn more about Penn's varied curriculum, student diversity, study abroad programs, and opportunities after graduation.
SD designed the logo and visual identity system for St. Timothy’s school to recall the long history of the school and to evoke the prestige of a private residential school for young women. Through the use of engraved stationery and classical typography, the materials signal a return to a classical education and an elite positioning among its peer institutions. The viewbook highlights all aspects of life at St. Tim’s through editorial-style photography and inspirational quotes by adventurous women such as Jane Goodall and Amelia Earhart.
The alumni magazine, Sans Peur, profiles prominent alumni and recent graduates. For the 125th anniversary of St. Timothy’s School, we designed a book that incorporates an essay on the school's history along with archival photographs.
We have partnered for more than a decade with the Baltimore Collegetown Network, a consortium of 14 area colleges and universities. In addition to designing the predominant graphic identity, we have created publications, collateral, and coordinated signage for the Collegetown shuttle bus system. Our design for the latest publication, the “Baltimore Look Book,” features highlights and activities targeted to students who are considering living and attending college in Baltimore.
We also designed and produced Collegetown’s LeaderShape program publications, which connects students across campuses and with Baltimore communities and neighborhoods to affect positive change through volunteer service.
Xaverian Brothers High School's viewbook emphasizes scholarship and preparation for college as a "calling" for young men, in keeping with its Catholic tradition. Students are encouraged to discover their own unique path toward gaining confidence and learning leadership skills.
Xaverian launched their capital campaign on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of their founding. The campaign name, “Called to Lead,” reflects the school’s mission to help boys discover their capacity for leadership and Xaverian’s long-standing position as leaders in Catholic education. Goals included investments in programs and facilities and endowments for financial aid and teaching excellence.
We collaborated with Keating Associates in Massachusetts for both projects.
When SD created the Dickinson College identity system in 2001, we employed bold primary colors to reflect the dynamism of the college community. The identity was applied in a wide range of settings, including an extensive series of admissions publications, building Dickinson pride and school spirit. Dickinson reflected its positioning theme of “engaging the world” through a logo incorporating a compass rose.
After Dickinson’s compass-rose logo was introduced, the college’s public image made tremendous strides. Dickinson achieved an international presence in the media and among prospective students, earning it a place among a more prestigious set of peer institutions. To reflect this rising stature, the compass rose was retired and we designed a new graphic identity system. The core of that system is the new Dickinson wordmark. To honor tradition while acknowledging Dickinson’s new status, the new system also incorporates a more liberal use of the college’s official seal, which has been refreshed for cleaner reproduction and will be used more widely.
Washington DC’s Foundation for the National Archives needed an “evergreen” piece that functioned as both an overview of their permanent resources and a modular device for promoting support for programs and fund-raising events. SD designed and engineered a portfolio containing pockets that hold an overview brochure, the annual report and multiple custom inserts.
NJIT, a technological research university, promotes an evolving commitment to innovation and change. SD's directive was to redesign their alumni magazine to reflect that commitment. To communicate the energy of NJIT’s groundbreaking research and the breadth of its curriculum in science and technology, we reinvigorated the magazine’s identity by adding strong conceptual illustration and photography paired with a new typographic style that evokes modern technology and contrasts nicely with NJIT’s text fonts. NJIT’s magazine identity has remained intact over time by creating covers that are varied and distinctive while retaining a consistent style.
We designed a coordinated communications program for Notre Dame’s undergraduate women’s college that includes a suite of admissions publications and graphic identity guidelines. The work features full-bleed photography depicting the school’s active campus community and rigorous academic life.
The program’s visual design includes headlines set in a hand-drawn script that appeals to high school girls and sets the publications apart from competing institutions.
With evocative portraits of young students and the use of bold typography, we created a new identity for the Baltimore Urban Debate League. BUDL uses debate as a catalyst for change within the Baltimore City school system. Effectively turning “students into scholars”, debate has the power to unleash the potential and change the lives of these young people.
Fairfield University wanted to refresh the design of its magazine while remaining within the family of the university’s existing graphic identity. In addition, the new look needed to appeal to a significant population of younger alumni who were losing touch with Fairfield.
One of our first tasks was to upgrade the quality of imagery by locating a professional photographer who was willing to work on features and covers for a flat rate that fit the magazine’s budget. This allowed us to be confident that conceptual covers and feature art could be executed successfully. The new nameplate, while adhering to the spirit of Fairfield’s branding guidelines, uses a display font more suited to larger sizes. Additional content blurbs on the cover make stories more accessible to busy alums.
Hillwood, Marjorie Merriweather Post’s former home in Washington D.C., now houses her extensive art collection and maintains the gardens and living quarters as a public attraction. SD was commissioned to design a 112-page “souvenir” book that highlights pieces from her collection of French eighteenth- and nineteenth-century decorative arts and Russian imperial art paired with exquisite photographs of the mansion and gardens.
We also designed a graphic identity, collateral and graphics for an exhibition of art and objects once collected by Russia’s Catherine the Great. For the signature logo, we incorporated an engraved portrait of Catherine from a miniature icon.
Hilbert College has an updated suite of admissions materials thanks to SD's bold and engaging design concept. The tabloid-sized viewbook profiles a cross section of Hilbert students “in their own words,” and highlights relevant statistics, facts, and outstanding programs. The admissions package has won awards for its innovative design and marketing approach and will continue to have a positive impact on the school's enrollment efforts.