Cover photo
Roger Black
Works at Roger Black Studio
Attended St. Thomas Choir School
Lives in Hong Kong
524 followers|23,498 views


Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
Except, maybe for the font. A little Bundespost for my taste. . . . 
Woah, this new Google+ really is beautiful. +1 would visit again
Add a comment...

Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
Comparing cars as metaphors for new publishing models. I didn't include a Merc from the same year as the first Honda subcompact, since it didn't seem all that bad. Probably why Detroit wasn't rushing to make tiny cars.
Add a comment...

Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
Was struck by a complete about-face by Scott Dadich, the loudly trumpeted designer at Wired who pushed Condé Nast down an expensive production path leading to gigantic, slow iPad apps. Strategy was put on hold when they found the apps weren't paying for themselves.

Now he's talking about combined print and digital workflow and adaptive design. Does this mean there is hope for the legacy publishing groups?

Well, it's better than last year's story.

More on this on my blog:
Add a comment...

Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
What we can do about travel? Joe Sharkey, who often has some useful observations about the ordeal of airline travel, completely flunked his year-end wrap up.

“Airlines Are Retrenching, and Alternatives Are Slim: The coming year will be a time of reckoning in business travel, as airlines reduce service at many airports and prospects fade for practical alternatives to flying, including the long-term promises of high-speed rail.”

Like the media business, the airlines are stuck in a broken model and unable/unwilling to change. A little creative destruction is inevitable. Clean start-ups like Virgin America are the future. (Used to be hopeful about JetBlue, but it grew too fast.) Following Southwest’s lead and abandoning the hug-and-spoke system devised by American’s Bob Crandall, Virgin keeps costs low, employes relatively happy, and service really pleasant. For example, the flight attendants don’t spend the boarding time chatting in the galley, they actually help passengers get seated so the plane can leave. And it helps that the planes are all new and interiors have cool lighting and don’t feel like a holding pens.

What we need is a new model:

• Direct flights instead of hub-and-spoke
• Staff incentives and transparent management that opens information channels and builds morale
• Pricing plan that favors regular customers instead of the least frequent
• Baggage service that is reliable and fast, so you don’t want to carry on your luggage
• The end of the TSA nonsense

As for high-speed trains, they may work in high-density areas like Germany, where populations have real centers served by networks of rapid transit that let passengers get to and from train stations easily and quickly. Compare this to the U.S., where populations are diffuse and the cities far between. Once you factor in the time to and from the depot, driving your car for, say, 200 miles, on your own schedule always seems like a better, cheaper option than a train.

For example, Amtrak takes four hours and 45 minutes from San Antonio to Houston, about 200 miles. (If you wanted to go tomorrow, it would be $50.) Deutsche Bahn’s ICE can do Hannover-Berlin, about the same distance, in 100 minutes. (Tomorrow's fare: €52.)

And we all love trains, and want to bring back the glory days of the Sunset Limted. And say that Amtrak got the old Southern Pacific main line, which is pretty straight and flat on this route, avoiding the cost new right-of-way ($12 million a mile in urban areas), and they put in medium-speed Acela service on the route, and did it in two hours and a half. How many passengers/day would they get, and what would they need to charge for the roadbed upgrade, trains, maintenance, depreciation, operations, and a little profit? Hard to imagine that they could bring it in for less than $150, the cost of an airplane ticket, one way, tomorrow.

And passengers from, say, Churchill Estates on the north side of San Antonio on their way Tanglewilde on the west side of Houston would not save much time taking the train, even if Amtrak was running at DB speeds, and even if they had friends take them to and pick them up at the stations. The problem is that few us travel from city-center to city-center. And let’s not even talk about the San Antonio or Houston bus system, which would take at least hour, with no traffic.

So trains are not the answer here. But somebody could fix the airline business.
Add a comment...

Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
The view from the desk this afternoon.
Add a comment...

Roger Black

Shared publicly  - 
With all due respect to Messrs. Scoble, Battelle and Winer, I take on the war between the walled gardens and the open web.

"It’s possible that the ecosystems, like the railroad trusts of the 19th century, will come in and idiots will shoot all the buffalo, and the frontier will be closed. But this is a virtual frontier. Instead of fearing Google and Apple and Amazon, we can use them."
THE Facebook IPO has stirred up old-guard of the web like nothing since Microsoft’s war on Netscape. They hate the Roach Motel principle of Facebook data—you check in, but you never check out. But the...
Bob Rosenbaum's profile photo
Nobody ever wins when fighting for walled gardens. Every wall eventually comes down.
Add a comment...
Design for narratives

Completing the assignment in March for the redesign of the Tatler magazines in Asia, Roger Black is turning to work with the Font Bureau, on a quiet startup, and on a book, Laying It Out, promised for this decade.

With magazines like Rolling Stone, for newspapers like The New York Times and web sites like, Roger Black has been developing ways to communicate content more effectively.His teams have redesigned Reader's Digest, Esquire, The Nation (Bangkok) and the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, to name a few. 

Bragging rights
Most recent work: and
  • St. Thomas Choir School
    Soprano, 1958 - 1962
  • Deerfield Academy
    1963 - 1966
  • University of Chicago
    Political science, 1966 - 1970
Basic Information
Media designer
  • Roger Black Studio
    media designer, 2005 - present
  • Font Bureau
    Partner, 1989 - present
  • Edipresse
    Group Creative Director, 2013 - 2014
  • Danilo Black
    Partner, 1989 - 2013
  • Rolling Stone
    Art Director, 1976 - 1979
  • New York
    Design Director, 1979 - 1981
  • The New York Times
    Director, Edit. Art, 1984 - 1985
  • Newsweek
    Art Director, 1985 - 1987
  • Interactive Bureau
    President, 1995 - 1999
  • The New York Times
    Art Director, Magazine, 1982 - 1983
  • The New York Times
    Senior Art Director, 1983 - 1984
  • LA
    Art Director, 1972 - 1972
  • Roger Black, Inc.
    media designer, 1973 - 1999
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Hong Kong
St. Pete Beach, Florida - Austin, Texas - New York, NY
A welcoming spot for natural food in St. Pete Beach.
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago
Made a special stop at a Mobil station to get Mobil 1 synthentic motor oil, and this station did not carry it. Why be a Mobil station? The rest of the place is in much need of maintenance. This is not the only Mobil station I have tried that doesn't stock their best oil, so I will get from auto parts stores, and skip the stations altogether.
Quality: Poor - FairAppeal: Poor - FairService: Poor - Fair
Public - 3 years ago
reviewed 3 years ago
The best pizza in St. Pete Beach and the the friendliest place in Pass-a-Grille. We've been going for years, and Gennaro's has consistently served delicious old-fashioned Italian food, reasonably priced. Plus, it's great to find a restaurant in a resort area that actually wants you to come back. Great people!
Public - 4 years ago
reviewed 4 years ago
5 reviews
Great place, but Google has misplaced on the map. It's across the street in the old Bank of China Building.
Food: ExcellentDecor: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - 3 years ago
reviewed 3 years ago
This may be the worst McDonalds in the United States. Terrible food, unhappy staff, slow service and filthy inside and out.
Public - 5 years ago
reviewed 5 years ago