Weapons of Reason issue 6
Delivered to Stack subscribers in Mar 2019

by Lucy Corkish in March 2019

Weapons of Reason exists to turn knowledge into action — each issue it picks a big, difficult, important challenge facing the world and breaks it down into a collection of stories, illustrations and infographics that give an in-depth but accessible account of what’s happening. With carefully crafted, jargon-free text and simple but clever artwork, it informs without overwhelming, and at the end of most stories you’ll find a ‘What now?’ section recommending practical next steps like further reading, a group you could join or a service you could try.

Name
Paul Willoughby

Job title
Creative Director

What is Weapons of Reason?
Weapons of Reason aims to provide a broad understanding of the interconnected challenges facing our world today. It also seeks to illuminate the path that ideas take from the past to the present, and how they might play out in the future. It shows the audience what’s going on, how they fit into the equation, and how their actions can influence outcomes.

What makes it different to the rest?
We show the trajectory of grand ideas shaping the planet, which enhances the audiences orientation amongst complicated issues. We use the visual poetry of illustration to land challenging ideas with playful storytelling.

Who makes Weapons of Reason?
Our agency, Human After All. Each issue a new designer from the HAA creative team will help design and commission the issue. The mag is edited by James Cartwright and illustrated and written by a growing body of international contributors. We try and use a fresh crop of writers and illustrators each issue to keep the community of WoR growing, and tailored to the global issue at hand.

Who reads it?
We want to make the mag accessible for a wide range of ages, which explains the disarming visual language, and commitment to simplicity in the data design. In reality, the readers we reach are those that are curious about global issues and how they might influence the future.

Why do you work in magazines?
It’s a stunning way to package a set of illuminating ideas in one seamless narrative. Those ideas can then spread via social media, events, a report, or wherever they should be published. The magazine currently is the nucleus of a set of resonant ideas.

Aside from the print magazine, what else are you involved in?
We’ve recently redesigned our website (weaponsofreason.com) to showcase the brand, our proposition, and give better access to our online wealth of articles on Medium. We also run events that speak to pertinent issues of our time, the last one centred around the design industry and its lack of female creative directors.

What would you change about Weapons of Reason if you could?
I’d make it even more simplified and immediate to grasp in it’s design approach. We push for ruthless simplicity, but I would take that to another extreme.

Where do you see Weapons of Reason in five years?
We’ll have a more focused digital ecosystem, delivering our particular brand of ideas in a more timely and convenient format straight to a growing legion of changemakers.




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