Art Director

 Submit application materials via email by Sept. 21, 2021. 

Position: Art Director
Department: Editorial, Creative
Reports to: Executive Editor
Status: Full-time employee (40 hrs/week)
Location: Remote, U.S. (Pacific time hours)
Salary: $70K-85K DOE, plus benefits

Are you a lifelong magazine junkie who happens to be a highly creative, conceptual designer and thinker with a passion for design across mediums? Do you have a sophisticated and unique design aesthetic with attention to detail? If YES!, then we want you on our editorial team!

YES! Media is a nonprofit independent publisher of solutions journalism. For 25 years, we have been inspiring people to build a more just, sustainable, and compassionate world through our reporting on the positive ways communities are responding to social problems and insightful commentary that sparks constructive discourse.

We are looking for an imaginative, collaborative, motivated, organized, and deadline-oriented Art Director to join our staff of 20+ employees in furthering our mission and thoughtfully partnering in YES!’s antiracism work by supporting our ongoing efforts to build an equitable, diverse, and inclusive organization.

Ideal candidates understand how magazines work and can bring ideas and innovations from throughout the magazine world to YES! Media. They are also willing to challenge the existing rules of print magazine design and present confident and compelling ideas that continue to evolve our visual strategy and vision for the future. We strongly encourage people from Black, Brown, Indigenous, and Asian communities to apply.

This is a full-time, fully remote position. All candidates must be legally authorized to work in the United States, generally working on Pacific Time. The Art Director will report to the Executive Editor. They will supervise the Associate Art Director for digital design and work collaboratively with our Audience Relations Team designer. In this way, the Art Director will lead a cross-departmental creative team, communicating the YES! brand throughout all platforms and channels of YES! Media and driving visually compelling and creative storytelling.

The base salary is $70,000-85,000 depending on experience, and includes employer-paid health, dental, and vision insurance, a health care deductible reimbursement program, generous paid sick and vacation leave, 11 paid annual holidays, and an employer-supported SIMPLE IRA.

The ideal candidate will be highly experienced in print magazine and digital art direction for a journalism outlet and excited about daily duties that include creating, maintaining, and executing the day-to-day operational flow for artwork through the following core responsibilities:

  • Collaboratively strategizing and executing the entire quarterly YES! Magazine in print and digital forms, including front and back covers, table of contents, the Solutions We Love department, theme department, Culture Shift, and publisher pages; and
  • Collaboratively strategizing and executing creative design and assets with the associate art director for all digital-first editorial content, including digital series and social-first content.

The Art Director is a leader in YES!’s newsroom, and should bring with them concepts and strategies to leverage YES!’s growing reach into multimedia platforms—including audio and video mediums. The Art Director will manage a Creative budget for assignments and licensing of photos, illustrations, and other graphic designs for print, web, and other potential mediums. This position offers substantial creative freedom and room for growth—as such, the ideal candidate must be ambitious and conscientious in their daily duties and their broader vision for YES!’s overall creative content and brand.

The position requires excellent organizational and time-management skills, including the ability to prioritize competing deadlines and maintain focus under pressure.

Strong candidates will have a clear creative vision, experience working with editors to enrich text-based storytelling, and be comfortable working across the organizational hierarchy to push for smarter and more creative storytelling. Top candidates will have extensive experience commissioning illustrations and making photojournalism assignments and be ready and willing to deploy their existing networks of creative freelancers—artists, illustrators, data visualization specialists, photographers, and more—to take YES!’s creative storytelling to new heights.

The Art Director is a member of YES!’s Editorial team, but will also support our development and marketing and engagement teams by providing creative input and support on fundraising, event promotion, and subscription acquisition efforts on digital platforms.

Like all staff at YES!, the Art Director should be someone who is committed to an inclusive workplace that values differences in race, class, culture, gender expression and identity, sexual orientation, and other aspects of individual and social identity. They should be committed to advancing equity within the organization and learning from the ideas, perspectives, and contributions of all staff members.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  • Mentor and supervise Associate Art Director
  • Determine the overall look and feel of YES! Magazine such that it supports editorial objectives, marketing and development objectives, as well as the brand and mission of the YES! organization.
  • Design magazine pages so that the overall impression of the magazine communicates brand personality: Inspiring, Insightful, Truth-telling, Compassionate, Active, Authentic. It needs to communicate the breadth of our coverage—so that if you’ve never heard of YES! and you pick up an issue, you will get a strong sense of what we care about: Economy, Democracy, Racial Justice, Civil Liberties, Health Justice and Wellness, Environmental Justice, and Native Rights.
  • Ensure print magazine makes clear connections between powerful ideas and practical actions. It should inspire people to create a better world. (Because of the way a print product travels unexpectedly through the world, the print magazine should act as a beacon for values-aligned people who have never heard of YES!)
  • Collaborate with executive editor on how to tell the theme outlined in the issue development document.
  • Collaborate with executive editor to ensure theme content, and regularly appearing departments/features support editorial objectives as well as the brand and mission of the YES! organization.
  • Ensure impactful and marketable display text that support design and overall visual storytelling.
  • Art direct the issue by commissioning illustration and photo assignments and researching appropriate stock.
  • Commission and edit structurally creative storytelling forms, such as illustrated essays, and stories heavily integrated with design, data stories, video, and audio.
  • Contribute illustrations and infographics, as needed.
  • Lead a magazine cover selection process to produce engaging cover images and coverlines that balance the interests of the organization: marketing and mission.
  • Collaborate with executive editor to ensure internal/house development consideration of each issue.
  • Attend mandatory team and organization meetings, including weekly editorial meetings, biweekly programs meetings, and monthly staff meetings.

Magazine production:

  • Manage an efficient Word/ Dropbox/Adobe/Kodak workflow that serves editorial fact checking, copy editing, proofing systems, design, prepress, and version control needs leading to printing and postproduction.
  • Determine space allocation for 64 pages.
  • Manage layout and file versioning systems in InDesign.
  • Coordinate with copy editing and proofing to ensure timely and error-free press upload to Royle Insite systems. Bluelines and page approvals.
  • Prepare images and pages for prepress ensuring monitor calibration for press-specified resolution, mode, density, color, sharpening.
  • Address UPC label and other distribution requirements.
  • Collaborate with Royle printers to coordinate paper orders, prepress tasks, insert and fulfillment requirements, and printing schedules.
  • Collaborate with Fulfillment to prepare and deliver prepress magazine wraps, tip-ons, inserts, and other collateral for vendor presses.
  • Maintain current fonts, templates, stylesheets in the YES! Media Dropbox.
  • Deliver complete archive.

Audience and Development: 

  • Collaborate with Audience Relations Team to produce effective inserts and ads supporting brand communication, fundraising, and marketing goals.
  • Collaborate with Development Team to produce the “About YES! Media” section in support of brand communication, fundraising, and marketing goals.

Engagement and Feedback Loops:

  • Collaborate with Audience Relations Team to prepare a cover survey for each issue two weeks before press deadline. Analyze and incorporate feedback as needed. Use the magazine cover selection process as an opportunity to engage reader feedback in qualitative and quantitative measures for the current issue, the upcoming issue, and issues farther out.
  • Prepare a staff version of the cover survey as a focus group offering feedback from target audiences.
  • Use both qualitative and quantitative feedback to continuously evaluate effectiveness of presentation and storytelling in communicating content to reach and engage diverse audiences.

Digital Magazine Content:

  • Oversee conversion of print content to digital platforms, such as PDF, e-book, and other versions of magazine issues, website digital edition, newsletters, and social media platform stories.
  • Provide magazine post-production collateral for use in marketing and outreach.

Post-Production:

  • Ensure timely payments to creative contributors.
  • Ensure legal licensing, permissions, fair use, and compensation for all visual collateral.
  • Ensure issue creative content comes in as budgeted.
  • Deliver a complete digital archive for Sharepoint.

In addition to excitement for the YES! brand and mission, qualified applicants should have: 

  • 5+ years of print magazine design experience, 3+ years of digital design experience, and 2+ years in a leadership role where you’ve managed employees and deadlines.
  • Cross-platform understanding of latest trends and best practices in editorial design.
  • Demonstrated experience with magazine production, including getting the issue from production to newsstand.
  • Demonstrated fluency with Adobe Creative Suite, specifically InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop.

 How to Apply

To apply, please send your resume, cover letter, and links to your portfolio (or at least three published examples of projects you art-directed, illustrated, or designed and led). In your cover letter, tell us how your artistic direction and vision will complement YES!’s print and digital aesthetic. Submit these materials in a single PDF via email to [email protected], with “Art Director” in the subject line, by September 21, 2021No phone calls, please.

Positive Futures Network/YES! Media is a proud equal opportunity employer committed to creating an inclusive and equitable workplace and encouraging people from underrepresented communities to apply. We encourage the following applicants: people of color, people with disabilities, and people of diverse sexual orientations, gender expressions and identities, who are underrepresented in the media field.