b. Editorial Decisions.
Most editors could get a job as a juggler.
Not only do they have to make decisions about your pictures such as which
ones to use, but their size, placement, and cropping.
They also must
balance the use of copy, other illustrations, headlines, captions, and white
(1) They are usually hampered by
material that must go in the publication.
(2) The importance of the material is a determining factor on
location; the hottest or most important items get the best positions.
your story is so complex that it takes several photos to get the message out
clearly, it may not fit on the front page.
18. Elements of a Good Layout.
If you know how a pictorial presentation is made effective by intelligent
layout techniques, you will be better equipped to be an effective
photojournalist. Your pictures should be arranged in a logical order which
develops the subject theme or idea.
The objectives of the layout are to
grab your readers' attention, excite their curiosity, and lead them from the
key picture through the body of the story to complete the communication. To
accomplish that goal, the editor concentrates on four main elements of the
To reach the reader, the editor must select from your
pictures the one that has the most emotional appeal and place it in a
position in the layout that stops the reader.
Some viewers become
emotionally involved to the point of tears or anger.
sympathetic or even become actively involved in the issue. The body and end
of the layout must maintain and support that impact.
b. Logical Order. The layout should be arranged to promote an easily-
understood flow of information. A haphazard jumble of pictures causes the
reader to jump about the presentation trying to follow the subject theme or
idea. The result is that the reader loses interest. You must arrange each
Never use two pictures that repeat a part of the story.
Good balance creates a pleasing and harmonious visual
effect on the reader. Good pictures are often sacrificed on the altar of
space and harmony.
Pictures trimmed in odd shapes, such as circles or
diamonds or an unusual format, such as long, narrow, vertical or horizontal,
generally are not used unless they contribute significantly to the layout.