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The VCFA MFA in Graphic Design Program Blog

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Hammer & Klaym present: NICE Magazine & Workshop series in Africa

September 23, 2017

NICE magazine exhibits the works of a young generation of African photographers, designers and writers and connects them to the world outside of their continent. It showcases transnational young African perspectives, aesthetics and styles and stories.

The first issue will be published end of 2017 by Klaym. The publication represents a unique collaboration between Klaym, Côte d’Ivoire-raised photographer Flurina Rothenberger, VCFA MFA in Graphic Design faculty Sereina Rothenberger and David Schatz of Zurich design agency Hammer, and several up-and-coming young talents from numerous African countries. The first issue will focus specifically on Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Produced in both Abidjan and Zurich, it will be distributed to numerous major cities across the globe. The first issues can be ordered now through the crowdfunding campaign running from September 15 through October 14.

The magazine, which is created parallel to the workshop, allows photographers to familiarize themselves with an editorial workflow such as selection procedures, sequencing and storytelling. This helped them to understand the needs of customers in terms of future editorial assignments. The practical part of the workshop program is completed with Software training in Adobe Indesign and Photoshop.The participants learned to mix and implement handcrafted techniques with digitalized procedures.

The magazine, which is created parallel to the workshop, allows photographers to familiarize themselves with an editorial workflow such as selection procedures, sequencing and storytelling. This helped them to understand the needs of customers in terms of future editorial assignments. The practical part of the workshop program is completed with Software training in Adobe Indesign and Photoshop.The participants learned to mix and implement handcrafted techniques with digitalized procedures.

Today, only few African photographers, communications designers and writers have been able to establish themselves outside of Africa. As such, their voices and stories are seldom heard and seen in other parts of the world. Klaym responds with it’s magazine NICE to a demand for genuine and compelling contemporary African ideas and stories by offering its wide audience a unique and sometimes surprising glimpse at real life within a particular African city.

Independent work is encouraged under the professional guidance and critique of local and international mentors.

Independent work is encouraged under the professional guidance and critique of local and international mentors.

The network Klaym was launched 2015 based on the vision to simultaneously stimulate economic development and artistic inspiration by bringing the works of young African creatives to the international stage. Klaym offers professional training for young photographers and visual designers in various African countries and promotes their work through NICE magazine.

Extract from the first pilot issue of The Nice Magazine. The publication was conceived 2016 with young Mozambicans in Pemba, designed by the graphic design studio Hammer and published end of 2016 in Portuguese and English.

Extract from the first pilot issue of The Nice Magazine. The publication was conceived 2016 with young Mozambicans in Pemba, designed by the graphic design studio Hammer and published end of 2016 in Portuguese and English.

Klaym launched a workshop and publication masterclass series on the African continent. The professional training is directed towards local young visual storytellers working on both, long and short term projects. The format of Klaym masterclass supports young photographers in developing their professional skills, their visual language and trains them to become better marketers of their own work. Experienced local and international mentors assist the trainees in the various aspects of their work: technical knowhow, history of art and photography, editing stories, and mixing hand-crafting techniques with digital methods for layout and design.

The current issue of The Nice Magazine from Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire is now in the making. The editorial design follows in style the pilot issue displayed here. The Nice magazine from Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire will be published in English and French and is launched January 2018.

The current issue of The Nice Magazine from Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire is now in the making. The editorial design follows in style the pilot issue displayed here. The Nice magazine from Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire will be published in English and French and is launched January 2018.

Embedded in a professional training workshop young Ivorian photographers, graphic designers and writers contribute and develop the content of Klaym’s first official publication: NICE.

The workshop includes both group exercises and individual "on the job" training. The latter allows mentors to focus on a photographer's specific skills and needs.

The workshop includes both group exercises and individual “on the job” training. The latter allows mentors to focus on a photographer’s specific skills and needs.

Following a successful pilot in 2016 including material from a workshop with youth of Pemba, Mozambique, the 2017 issue of NICE is the first of a planned series. Each issue will focus on a different African city and will deliver a portrayal of this place through the eyes of its young citizens. Content, images and text will be developed as a collaborative effort between young local photographers, local designers and international mentors. This year’s workshop tool place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire from August 8 to September 15, 2017.

The trainees learn and train the essential aspects of a photoshoot, both in the studio and outdoors. The workshop emphasizes in encouraging the trainees to build their own professional equipment and to understand improvisation as their personal tool of an individual visual style.

The trainees learn and train the essential aspects of a photoshoot, both in the studio and outdoors. The workshop emphasizes in encouraging the trainees to build their own professional equipment and to understand improvisation as their personal tool of an individual visual style.

Contributions will spotlight themes such as migration, the informal economy, fashion and urban development. Street portraits will also touch on cross-cutting issues such as multiethnicity, gender, and digital transformation. Zurich based design agency Hammer will take on the lead for the magazine’s design and layout. Together with the workshop participants they ensure that the magazine is aesthetically appealing to both a local and global audience.

The workshop program includes lessons in writing and the basics of leading short interviews. The participants also receive an introduction to copyrights and ethics of journalism.

The workshop program includes lessons in writing and the basics of leading short interviews. The participants also receive an introduction to copyrights and ethics of journalism.

Launch and distribution The magazine launch is scheduled for January 2018 in the newly opened artbook shop “Never Stop Reading” in Zurich. In the following fortnight a special exhibit and discussion rounds on the magazine’s launch will be open to both public and media.

Spread from the pilot issue of NICE

Spread from the pilot issue of NICE

The Abidjan edition of NICE will be available worldwide through professional distributors. NICE will also be present at different international Art Book Fairs in 2018. Check it out here: http://wemakeit.com/projects/the-nice-magazine!