Olympics Graphics from LAT Online

So we have seen — and will continue to see — some incredible Olympic graphics from around the world. Lauded here and in the usual social design circles. Good. That’s what the Olympics are for. I have a pair of issues with this.

First: Accuracy. More than a few stunning-at-the-expense-of-accuracy graphics are surfacing. Bad.

Second: Degree of difficulty. If all we do is laud the highest-end technical proficiency, we’re leaving out the large portion of us who don’t have the resources or skills to pull them off.

Which brings us to what the Los Angeles Times is doing.

The Times is taking what amounts to print graphics (maybe not in dimensions but in terms of “things one can produce in Illustrator”) and organizing them by sport in an easy-to-find, scrolls-with-the-screen fashion. And they’re pegged to the news, such as the above graphic on Missy Franklin’s backstroke technique.

You can check these out, feel smarter, and move on to the next one. For 90 percent of us presenting the games, this is exactly what we want our audience to get out of our visuals. Other examples:


Track and field.


London guide.


Friday’s Buffalo News.

Friday’s Boston Globe

About Josh Crutchmer

is design and graphics editor at The Plain Dealer.

Leave a Reply