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John McWade, Before & After

I remember years ago Tom Peters raging on about the importance of design. And, as usual with Tom, he was right on the money.  Because content and knowledge is now ubiquitous and free, design becomes absolutely critical to adding value and creating something of worth.  It’s no longer content and then some token thought about design.  The design is a significant part of the content.

That’s why I’m so delighted to have spoken to John McWade. For decades he’s been at the forefront of design in publishing.  He currently publishes the brilliant Before & After magazine, which on a regular basis shares practical tips on graphic design. In doing so, he’s drawing on experience that started when he was the very first user of Aldus PageMaker – a program that grew up to become Adobe – and he founded the first desktop publishing company.

In our conversation we cover

  • the genius of Apple and their design (and it’s not just their cool gadgets)
  • how John knows when a piece of work is complete
  • the starting point for any project – design-led or otherwise – and the big question you need to ask
  • a fundamental principle of design which you can use in planning everyday life, not just a magazine cover
  • John’s three word mantra for brilliant design – and for that matter, Great Work

You can connect with John at www.BAMagazine.com

Listen to my interview with John McWade.


0:16 Michael introduces John McWade

0:29 John’s Before and After magazine and his books Before and After Graphics for Business and Before and After Page Design

2:23 The genius of Apple and their design (and it’s not just their cool gadgets)

6:54 How John knows when a piece of work is complete

8:40 The starting point for any project – design-led or otherwise – and the big question you need to ask

12:18 A fundamental principle of design which you can use in planning everyday life, not just a magazine cover

19:12 John’s three word mantra for brilliant design – and for that matter, Great Work

21:57 How to find out more about John McWade

22:26 Michael closes the interview

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