Bird spotting

Last week I was changing planes in Munich, writes Andrew Losowsky, and spotted this cover of Business Punk, a relatively edgy business/lifestyle magazine – check that headline – made by the same company as Beef!

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December 23, 2013


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A look back at 2013

Andrew Losowsky has taken a trawl through all our 2013 posts, added a few further thoughts, and come up with this magCultural review of the year. Enjoy!

It’s been a typically big year for magazines. There have been launches and closures, like any other year; the latter are “evidence” for lazy journalists of the death of print of course, but for most of us, it’s just business as usual.

There have been some really interesting industry moves, many big discussions, some new ideas and several moments during which magazines and their makers have led debates on content, ideas, design and creativity.

Here’s what stood out to me – it’s dominated by English-language publications but I’d love to know what I missed, in other languages or otherwise, in the comments or on Twitter (@losowsky / @magCulture)

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‘My Favourite Magazine’ – for Bob Newman

Yesterday was the deadline for submitting your favourite magazine to our project to help Bob Newman and his family. A huge thank you to everyone who has already contributed their selection, as well as to everyone that has blogged and tweeted to encourage support. We have many great entries that’ll make a fascinating publication.

A few people asked for some more time, so we’re opening that up to everyone. The new, enhanced Deadline 0.2 is next Monday, June 3. You have the weekend! Spend it wisely – tweet this news, then dive into your magazine box pile/shelf/archive/library/storage facility/warehouse and start the search.

Full details of the project, how to enter and FAQs after the jump.

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The Great Magsby

In a scene in the new ‘Great Gatsby’ movie, Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) is shooting photos of Daisy on Gatsby’s dock, writes Andrew Losowsky. “Don’t you think she should be on the cover of Vogue?” asks DiCaprio’s Gatsby. (NB, I’m paraphrasing slightly, I don’t recall the exact wording.)

Two thoughts:

1) I have no idea if this is deliberate product placement or not, but given that Carey Mulligan as Daisy IS on the cover of American Vogue this month (above), is this the first case of a movie predicting a magazine cover?

2) American Vogue’s 1922 covers of course weren’t photographs (that first happened ten years later). Instead, they featured highly stylized fashion illustrations like this one. Though it’s just possible that Gatsby was indeed referring to her look being sufficiently generic to satisfy these conditions, it seems doubtful, and so I would like to sound the mag-geek anachronism klaxon.

Spotted any other horrendous mag-related inaccuracies at the cinema lately?


Kurt Andersen looks back at Spy

Andrew Losowsky hears a rare talk by one of the founders of Spy magazine.

On Tuesday I went to see Kurt Andersen (now perhaps best known here in the States as a public radio presenter) give a talk about Spy magazine to a tiny roomful of people at D-Crit, New York.

Spy was a co-creation of himself, Graydon Carter (with whom he worked with at Time magazine, and who went on to become the much-lauded editor of Vanity Fair, a post he’s held since 1992) and businessman Tom Phillips.

It ran from 1986-98 (though its founders left within two years of selling it to investors in the early 1990s), and it is increasingly viewed as being hugely significant for its satirical outlook and innovative design, originally by Alexander Isley. The entire Spy archive is now available for free on Google Books.

Andersen described the event as the first time in 20 years that he’d gone back to discuss Spy. Here are some freeform notes that I took during his highly entertaining presentation.

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Magtastic 5: April 2013

Andrew Losowsky in New York returns from the corner kiosk with some recent US magazines. ‘An overdue update from these shores, so it seems appropriate that I open with Apology.’

So what are you thinking of when I say “A new magazine from the former Editor-in-Chief of Vice”?

It’s probably not Apology magazine, an elegant, pretty much gonzo-free publication that’s indulgent in all the right ways. In his editor’s note (perversely placed at the end of the magazine), Jesse Person says that the magazine is named “as a reference to the classical idea of apologetics (pl.n. reasoned arguments defending a theory or doctrine).” He also describes it as “my apologia against what I see as the problematic state of magazines today, both big and small.”

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Magtastic 5: Books for magazine people

Andrew Losowsky surveys recent magazine-related design books

In my day job, I’m currently the Books Editor at The Huffington Post, and I even have a book of my own about to come out, ‘Fully Booked’ (Gestalten), about how print book design has reacted to the rise of digital media. So it seems appropriate that I take a look at a few books that have come out in the last 12 months or so, which might interest the discerning magCulture reader.

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MagFest 2012 August 26-27

Plans are coming together well for the PPA’s MagFest in Edinburgh (August 26/7 at Our Dynamic Earth museum, above). I’ll be taking part in a design workshop, while Andrew Losowsky and I will each be speaking alongside an impressive list of magazine folk – see site for full list.

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February 21, 2012


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5 Magtastic things: February

Here’s the second monthly contribution from our man in New York Andrew Losowsky.

1 / Pillow case talk
2 / A German thing in a box
3 / Printers Row
4 / You’ve got mail
5 / Quarterly

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Happy new year

Enough 2011! I hope you all had a good holiday break and a happy start to 2012.

MagCulture enters the year in busy mode. Several new work projects are coming up and there are exciting developments for the blog and associated channels.

Following the end of Colophon, Andrew Losowsky and I have been discussing what happens next and the immediate news is that Andrew will be contributing a regular strand to the blog. Look out for his first 5 Magtastic Things, here shortly.

Our online magazine shop has started well, with orders from every continent meaning some of our favourite magazines being spread far and wide. More exciting publications coming soon. Meanwhile the pop-up shop at the Church of London continues (stocking the same selective range as the website), with plans to build it in to their soon-to-be-redesigned reception area. And Printout! continues in partnership with Stack – next edition taking place this Thursday, January 5. That’s two days time – book now!

Last but not least we’re planning the first magCulture events, starting this March in London with a collaboration with Eye magazine and following up with various events in other countries. News soon.