California Landscaping bi-monthly trade publication
Editorial Art Direction & Production
California Landscape Contractors Association is a statewide professional organization representing and improving the professionalism of licensed landscape contractors and the associated industries through education and networking events. California Landscaping was CLCA’s bi-monthly, full-color trade magazine targeted at licensed landscape professionals (1999-2012).
Art direction and graphic production of covers and editorial content, including photoessays, infographics and the creation of regular column styles.
The editorial focus of the title was on the high-end landscape design of the CLCA membership, as well as current trends, legislation and news that effected the green industry.
Unlike many trade publications that defer to bland template-driven and text-heavy layouts, my personal goal was to elevate California Landscaping through the use of custom typographic treatments, full-bleed features and a creative direction borrowing from architecture, travel and fashion genres.
As lone in-house creative from 2006-2010, I was given free rein to make the magazine as visually impressive as possible. Each issue was generally created during bi-monthly 2-week production cycles.
Creating full-bleed, dynamic layouts often ran contrary to the size, style and quality of the often amateur images provided by the contractors, but presented opportunities to create unique solutions. Ad sizes used by the bulk of the industry are formatted in column inches (borrowed from tabloids and newspaper), which lead to layout challenges when using ‘pick-ups’ in our own standard LTR/A4 format. Effectively using these odd spaces was a continual challenge.
Despite a limited circulation (5K), the magazine was well-received and financially self-sustaining through my departure in 2010.
Of all the work done at CLCA, California Landscaping was the one project I knew I could really bring my A-game to. Over time, my input became more valuable and the art direction more important to the raising the expectations the association set for the magazine.
Project management by Communications Manager John Sassaman, advertising design by Lori Mattas, regular editorial content contributed by Joan Waters and Michael Riley. Most photos were sourced from CLCA member projects submitted through the association’s annual awards program.