Your magazine design can be a very personal affair. Contracting a designer to get the layouts and graphic design completed comes down to time. A designer normally works either on a per project basis or by the hour. Make sure you agree a set fee with your designer to manage your costs and to ensure you ultimately end up as profitable as possible.
Try to agree design costs that include at least one round of amendments to ensure you get the finished articles and the design polished, looking the way you want them and your designer should make all finished files print ready for submission to us including crop marks, bleed and embedded fonts.
Be-aware that some graphic designers are very good at the creative aspects of your magazine and some are aware that print design and layouts are very different. Make sure your graphic designer is well adverse to the foibles of print design. They should know about bleed, crop marks, embedding fonts and gutters. Just by asking about their knowledge on those four will separate the men from the boys. If your designer is not geared up for print then you will soon start hitting problems when your magazine goes to press and it may cost you more money to get right or your end product will not be printed correctly.
It may be worth pointing out here that freelance graphic designers are generally just as good as design agencies but be aware that there is only one pair of hands doing your work so the timelines may be extended but possibly cheaper.
Depending on the type of publication you are creating you may incur charges for images you want to purchase from photographers and image libraries online. Make sure you buy the right licenses for the image rights or this will cost you a lot more than you realise.
Now, where you can save the most amount of money is by writing a tight, concise design brief with detailed instructions on where advertisements go and how to lay up the content. Do this by creating a visual representation either electronically or drawn, showing ad sizes and your vision on how the text should be laid out. The design process should be given enough time to make sure you are happy to go to print, it may be worth asking your design team how they work. Do they want drip feeds of pages throughout your construction process or do they want one project.
Ultimately you want the way that saves you the most headaches and balances out the costs of production with the amounts of income generated from your lovingly created magazine design.
If you do need some help with your artwork setup here is are ‘Editors and Publishers Guide to Greatness’ for you to get a basic understanding of some ideas for your artwork:
Why not ask us for a price to layup and sort your magazine artwork? Magazine Artwork Design Quote