Launched in 2018 by the Animation Guild, Local 839, Keyframe was designed to celebrate the membership of the Guild and the craft of animation. The quarterly publication aims to inform, entertain, and educate the animation community through thoughtful editorial and design that showcases the artistry of the field.
For years the Animation Guild distributed a small, black and white, photocopied newsletter called The Peg-board. This simple newsletter was used to communicate basic union issues: contract negotiation updates, wage concerns, scheduled events, and the occasional artist spotlight. In 2017 the Executive Board of TAG voted to elevate their industry presence to a level on par with other entertainment unions like the Director’s Guild and Writer’s Guild, both with slick 4-color, perfect-bound magazines with striking photography and cover-to-cover advertising. But TAG wanted to go a step further—to bring humanity and personality to the organization and its members—not just showcase bells, whistles and tech. This would not be a trade publication, this would be an art publication.
Keyframe is designed to feel like an open exhibition space for TAG members—a place to unveil the many layers of skill and refinement that go into an animated work. We peel those layers all the way back to the artists themselves, inventively exploring the relationship between the artist and their creations, whether those are characters or entire worlds. As a nod to its predecessor, the Keyframe masthead was designed to use the simple shapes of a peg-board used in hand drawn animation, a graphic element. That simple design is carried throughout the issue in the column eyebrows, with the rounded quality of that graphic reflected in the typography and all line work to create a subtle softness throughout.