February 16, 2004

Blithe House Quarterly: Design Volunteer Needed

Blithe House Quarterly, the premier LBGT literary magazine, is looking for a graphic/web design volunteer to design its 2005 volume of four issues.

This one year commitment to BHQ is limited to conceiving the design premise for 2005's issues, designing and building the four individual issues, and doing 8 banners per issue. (I code the stories and the copy and paste it into the appropriate pages.) Our 2002-2003 designer, Steve MacIsaac, and I have pretty much redone the site architecture, so the new designer doesn't have to do any major rethinking. We're fairly old skool when it comes to code, as it has to be something I can handle with entry-level Dreamweaver skills. The design has to enable on-the-fly changes to the copy as I, say, don't get the stories for the issues until 18 days before the issue goes live, so I have to code in the the titles and the story pages in HTML rather than JPGs and GIFs.

Now, besides the technical issues, there are aesthetic/ideological ones. There is an "idiom" to BHQ's design -- we don't look like a literary magazine and don't look like a "traditional" website, either. Here's an article on post-punk design that perfectly articulates the BHQ aesthetic.

Our design concept is usually a pun on "house", "housewares". "architecture", "home appliances". "interior design", etc. One year, we looked like a booklet of wallpaper samples; one issue had a house plan; another year, every issue was the diagram for a kitchen appliance, etc. 2003's theme was Bauhaus/New Wave graphic design with a branding logo. I like the logo a lot and people have suggested we keep using it as our "brand".

The design volunteer can reuse the house logo I designed for 2003's issues; I was not able to reuse it for this year's design as I didn't have the chops to integrate it into 2004's design premise (which is more Malcolm Garrett meets Peter Saville by way of Andy Warhol in a jazz record store by an architecture bookshop). The designer can also come up with something completely different, as long as it is within our idiom.

Naturally, whoever designs the issues gets credit and linkage on the front page and in the bio page. I also write kickass recommendation letters that have served people in endeavors that followed their tenure in the magazine.

If you have an interest in the position, or have questions about it, please contact me at ADAlvarez@aol.com.

Aldo Alvarez
Executive Editor and Publisher
Blithe House Quarterly : a site for gay short fiction

Aldo Alvarez, author of INTERESTING MONSTERS : Fictions (Graywolf Press)

Posted by ronn at February 16, 2004 10:09 PM