Venkat Raman –
About five months ago, at one of our ‘Managing the Change’ meetings, we asked ourselves as to whether there was a need to change the scope, content and ‘appearance’ of Indian Newslink. It was a meeting of – as someone called us – ‘workers,’ the daily people who write, procure advertisements, design, proof-read and pass on electronic files to printers. It was therefore a staff-driven challenge of doing everything ourselves and doing them in four months so that we could test-run dummies and choose the best possible.
It was at one of the meetings that we decided to seek opinion from the best source: You.
As readers and advertisers of the oldest Indian newspaper in New Zealand, you know Indian Newslink the best and hence your views reign supreme.
You told us to change the format, the font and the layout, make the pages look brighter and smarter and add new reading material. You wanted us to have a makeover, enhance the quality of the editorials. You told us, “You were good, got better and now we want you to take that vacant position of being the best.”
We listened and began making the changes. It was an exercise confined to just us- workers with the support, guidance and approval of the Managing Director and his Chief Operating Officer.
The result is in your hands. It was not the first design – there were several of them- neither is likely to be the last- for, as we have said before, change is the essence of life. It excites, inspires, challenges and gets everyone involved.
The production Team
Our creative team accounts for Production Manager Mahes Perera and Designer Shine Kumar who are adept in pagination techniques (use of columns), typography (font), and colour, all of which help to distinguish Indian Newslink in the market.
Throughout our brain-storming sessions, we were reminded of the need to maintain simplicity, elegance, relevance, reader-friendly, and most importantly our uncompromising stand on quality journalism.
The following notes were given by Mahes and Shine:
The New Face
Our logo is bold, strong and modern. Standing on its own ground, it symbolises Indian Newslink of strength, stability, courage, patience, endurance, elegance, responsibility and fearsome memory.
The all-lower case of the masthead denotes humility- the ‘i’ inspires confidence, not egotism; it denotes friendliness, not uptightness.
Blue is a colour that radiates sobriety, fidelity, trust, intelligence, futurism, everything in fact that keeps the human clock ticking.
Many readers were aware of the upcoming changes for they saw ‘men at work’ on the masthead. The progressive changes shown in three consecutive issues, including ‘sans advertising design of some pages and new columns demonstrated that work was in progress. That was our style of subtlety, making a gradual but definite change.
In choosing the fonts for headlines, standfirsts, storyboards, footnotes and photo captions, we have used a judicious mix of serif and sanserif fonts. The photographs used in our regular columns are taken by our team of photographers, who are known for their creativity and high standards of professional ethics.
Our Anniversary Special
Mahes and Shine who designed the front page of our 60-Page Anniversary Special say that it reflects our penchant for change and the fact that we have changed.
The Anniversary Special is a departure from the ‘self-cover’ concept followed in our 16-year history, except the first issue, which was a Diwali bonanza in November 1999.
The new design embraces concepts of integrity, relevance, balance, stability and forthrightness. These values have been enshrined in Indian Newslink since its inception.
Our production team has created an abstract elephant with flowers, colours, text and other graphical elements to articulate these values with creativity, words and colour.
We hope you would like the changes that have made Indian Newslink look anew.
This issue, in more ways than one, is the beginning of a new era.
A new era that marks a new milestone in our journey pursuing excellence.
All because of one driving force.
You, Dear Reader.