News - Student-Produced VISTA Accepts Several Awards
Student-Produced VISTA Accepts Several AwardsBy Rachel Heston-Davis
Several major awards for the fall 2016 issue of the student-produced Vista magazine highlight the strong design curriculum at Greenville College and hint at the promising future of design and student publications in general at the College.
The Vista won several “ADDYs,” bestowed through the annual American Advertising Association competition. The Vista competed in the Peoria chapter. The magazine won gold overall, qualifying it for the district and national competitions later this year. It also won Judge’s Choice.
The Vista won silver ADDYs for its website and cover. Writer Anna Brannon received silver ADDYs for two articles and claimed a third with photographer Logan Nelson for a joint project.
In-the-Trenches Job Training
Vista Faculty Advisor and Assistant Professor of Digital Media Lisa Sharpe credits the VISTA’s big win to the strong art direction of the Vista staff, along with their design skills. Many on the student design team were returning staff members with previous Vista experience and plenty of digital media smarts.
For example, students created the issue’s most impressive feature, the cover, without the help of digital editing tools like Photoshop. They used a flashlight, multicolored glowing smartphones and long camera exposure to create a stunning image.
Within the pages of the magazine, Sharpe points to spreads like “Enjoy Illinois” (below left) and “Pursuit: We Are What We Sing” (below right) for examples of designs that succeed at drawing the eye “through the page.”
Working on the Vista provides students with invaluable work experience and gives them creative freedom to do something unique and original.
“It’s an opportunity to collaborate with an invitation-only team to produce a professional product, and that’s very good for a portfolio,” says Sharpe, “It’s also great in-the-trenches training for design because you have to meet deadlines.”
An Evolving Tradition
The Vista transitioned from yearbook to magazine in 2011 and is already reaching the next step in its evolution as it moves online. Sharpe explains that Greenville College will continue to print a physical Vista, but she sees the online version as the “medium [with] the most potential for growth.
She hopes for a future online Vista that allows interaction from all students—not just staff members. This might mean publishing more student work, setting up an interactive social media feed to showcase fun GC moments, and other changes.
Sharpe is also pushing the design element of the Vista down a new path. She hopes future issues will incorporate a more arts-based approach—illustration, mixed media and designs with a more hand-made appearance.
“The Vista is a tradition,” Sharpe says. “It evolved from the yearbook, and it’s continuing to evolve.”
Find out more about student publications at Greenville College: