Working in print media, a key issue for a photo editor/art director is how to design the page so that the photographs and text use form to emphasize content. On the Web, despite all its freedom, most publications use a content management system that makes it almost impossible to explore the potentials of innovative design. It is certainly cheaper and more efficient to use such a system (this blog uses one), but the potentials of the image are short circuited in a brochure-like design. Certainly doing it otherwise is expensive and time-consuming (a major reason why, barring significant financial support, it has been difficult to continue with PixelPress.org).
When one looks at great magazine design there is almost nothing like it on the Web. The era of mass picture magazines started with magazines like Vu in France where the covers were as graphic and stunning as posters. Inside pages for Vu and other early magazines like Regards and Picture Post were used to experiment with all kinds of juxtapositions of images, text and other graphic elements. But what we end up with in terms of design at the beginning of the Web era is much like what we have in desktop publishing — clean sites that look professional but are almost never transcendent.