Focal Spot magazine began forty-three years ago as a one-color, single-sheet newsletter about life at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology (MIR). Over time, the publication evolved alongside the Institute it covered, growing eventually into a full-color, glossy magazine that focused on the pioneering work of faculty members, and the real life stories of the Institute’s people.
After a two-year hiatus, MIR leadership wished to relaunch Focal Spot. Enrich was asked to refresh the magazine and give it a modern look and approach.
Having recently completed a 200-page book detailing the history of MIR, our relationship with the organization and experience made us a perfect fit for this project. We were already well-educated about the great contributions of this world-renowned medical institution, enabling us to have a better understanding of how to connect with the readership.
Over time, the writing and design of Focal Spot had become stale and some people at MIR didn’t see the need to revive it at all. Typography and design elements were not cohesive from story to story and from issue to issue. The magazine had also fallen into a habit of using uninspiring cover imagery, consistently featuring researchers in their lab. Working with Holly Edmiston, the new editor, our challenge was to design the magazine in a way that would get people excited about the innovative work being done at the Institute.
When a prospective reader picked up the magazine, we wanted it to be clear that this wasn’t the same old Focal Spot. On the cover, we simplified the masthead — Focal Spot became FS. By utilizing dynamic radiology imagery, the audience is engaged while the magazine still maintains its scientific appearance.
Visual metaphors were used to make complex concepts easier to understand. Each feature story included a compelling image to introduce the text. A grid and typographic system accommodated different levels of content while maintaining a cohesive look.
- MIR once again has a publication to showcase its innovative research and clinical advances.
- Because of its new, clean format, Focal Spot is once again on a regular publication schedule.
- Issues published to date have received very positive responses and readership has increased.