This is more of a design question than a technical one so am not sure if this is the appropriate forum to ask in...

I’m planning on making an A5 publication but I am quite new to using grids and I am a bit overwhelmed by how to go about using them within my publication. There are so many grids and rules out there like the golden ratio, fibonacci grid, column grid, baseline, modular etc. and its a bit confusing to when its appropriate to use what grid.

I have made a few rough layout sketches of the potentially 9-12 spreads I will be using. It will be a playful satirical magazine in a similar format to a teenage gossip magazine. So there will be a lot of colour, cut and paste imagery and bold titles balanced by body copy for the articles and quizzes. I know column grids will definetly be used for the articles.

I am not quite sure what the next step is after the quick mock-ups. I’ve made a moodboard and will transfer mock-ups into illustrator to flesh out more thumbnail layouts. I have a basic understanding of grids however I don’t know if there is a maximum number of grid variations to use in a magazine that still keeps it cohisive.

I have researched grid layouts on the internet and its mostly basic introductions but not as in-depth as I would like. It would be good to find a resource of someone using a range of different grids and explaining the reason for using each one dependant on the design brief. Would be great to get some advice and helpful resources :)

  • 1
    Grids are like recipes when cooking.... they can help you get started, but the best chefs tend to diverge from any recipe along the way to create a better dish in the end.
    – Scott
    Sep 25, 2021 at 20:31

1 Answer 1


You can start by not overthinking it.

Not many people will recognize a fibonacci grid or golden ratio grid while looking at a printed piece.

A grid can always be adjusted on the go from something basic like, "A5 with 8mm of side margins and 3 columns with 5mm gutter", to a more mathematical grid, which will most likely look like a basic grid anyway.

Also, you might consider InDesign as the better tool for this, since it has much more advanced grid and page flow features.

Ultimately, it is the content that matters and how it flows into the design.

enter image description here

  • Illustrator is fine for single pages. Especially if you intend to draw stuff along with the text.
    – joojaa
    Sep 25, 2021 at 11:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.