Social Work Advocates Magazine

National Association of Social Workers | NASW
Bi-monthly Magazine, Custom Illustrations, Cover and Features, Departments
2020 Gold EXCEL Award, Feature Article Design
2020 Silver EXCEL Award, Feature Article Design
2020 Bronze EXCEL Award, Design Excellence
2019 Gold EXCEL Award, Design Excellence
2019 Gold EXCEL Award, Redesign
2019 Gold EXCEL Award, Feature Article Design
2019 Silver EXCEL Award, Feature Article Design
2018 Graphic Design USA
2018 Gold Trends All-Media

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with more than 120,000 members. In an effort to keep such a large membership up to date and well-informed, NASW published a bi-monthly newsletter full of social work news, stories that detail best-practices, NASW announcements, member news and everything in between. The content was already highly valued, but when NASW partnered with GRAPHEK to transform the newsletter into a full-fledged magazine, the design aimed to become just as esteemed.

Having the opportunity to assemble a magazine from scratch is a rare chance to take both design and new copywriting elements into consideration and allowing every aspect of the publication to work in unity, and GRAPHEK seized the opportunity. The tasks included renaming the magazine and departments as well as designing a new nameplate, table of contents, department grid, eyebrows, feature grid, end-it icon, and masthead as well as exploring and setting a color palette and consistent font for the magazine. This also included organizing and structuring the flow of the magazine so it would be easy for readers to navigate. NASW ultimately settled on a solution that was clean and contemporary with just the right amount of personality to reflect the social work profession. The nameplate design allows for a two-color treatment that matches each cover story as well as provides ample-space to showcase each subsequent cover story illustration.

For the magazine interior, GRAPHEK translated the newsletter’s traditional content into distinct sections, giving each its own color and eyebrow treatment to help readers easily navigate each issue. A unique illustration style was developed and cemented to help keep the small editorial illustrations that dot each issue more consistent with each other and the magazine’s brand as a whole. Inversely, the custom-illustrations and layout that GRAPHEK creates for each issues’ cover and feature story span an endless number of styles that each best resonates with its story’s particular content, keeping this treasured magazine fresh and exciting for readers.

“Where talent meets skill and experience, GRAPHEK had an instant understanding of what we needed and how best to help us achieve it. Working with Ellen and her team has been effortless and their delivery of exceptional ideas, on schedule, has surpassed our expectations. We needed to change formats from a newspaper to a magazine, and GRAPHEK hit the nail on the head at every stage of the process. We are thrilled to have found a partner in creating an engaging magazine that inspires and elevates the content we deliver to our membership.”

_Martha Rothblum

Creative Arts Manager – National Association of Social Workers