For this week’s cover story by Joe Klein about the loss of his parents, we designed a graphically simple cover.
It marked the first time in more than a decade (spanning more than 500 covers), that only typography with no image appeared inside TIME’s iconic red border.
The headline ’How to Die‘ on a solid red background echoes the magazine’s iconic ’Is God Dead?‘ cover from April 8, 1966. That cover, which the L.A. Times named one of the 10 magazine covers that ‘shook the world,’ was the first type-only cover in TIME’s history.
It used a variation of the Bodoni typeface on a solid black background and was an extreme departure from the small, limited type treatments featured on the cover the previous 34 years.
To illustrate this week’s story, however, we stayed closer to our established visual language — the headline was set in Franklin Demi, one of our family of typefaces.
While we wouldn’t necessarily call it divine inspiration, several have drawn comparisons to the 1966 cover. And it’s certainly rewarding to know we can continue to uphold TIME’s storied 90-year visual history.
-By D.W. Pine and Skye Gurney