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Wednesday, June 26,2013

The covers story

by Andy Balaskovitz
Undergrads in the Michigan State University Department of Advertising and Public Relations were tasked with designing this week’s Beer Issue cover art as part of a yearly intensive summer portfolio workshop spearheaded by professors Henry Brimmer and Larry Steinberg.

The class of 10 broke into five groups, leaving the City Pulse newsroom with a difficult decision to choose among the five options.

The selected cover (by Wesley Choi and Paige Bolen) expresses that do-it-yourself nature of Michigan’s craft beer industry, whether it’s a well-known brewery that started in a basement or the thousands of people still in their basement catching on to the homebrewing phenomenon.

But it was not an easy or unanimous choice. Others went for the pair of bar flies cracking jokes with another (by Leah Cranston and Lindsay Stormer). Other styles include the elegant growler with hand-written text (by Madeline Rosemurgy and Stephen York) and a wrestler holding a keg, exclaiming the “power of beer” (by Kelsey Sedelmeier and Henrik Blix). The keg spout substituting the L in Pulse signifies a flowing industry, if you will (by Krista Wiegand and Collin Magin).

Brimmer said the students had “little time to come up with ideas and refine the covers, which is not unlike the pace at which agencies work.” Students were given the assignment in the morning and came up with concept by afternoon. A final presentation was made the next day. Each cover is the combined work of an art director and a copywriter and is meant to mimic a professional ad agency, Brimmer said.

“From my point of view,” Brimmer said, “this is the way I think more classes ought to be taught: intensive tag-teaching across disciplines all the time.

“I love this class.”

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