Browsing in a second hand bookshop the other day, I was struck by a wall decorated with the entirety of n+1’s issues. The covers of the New York-based literary magazine are beautiful and abstract, designed since the second issue by graphic designer Dan O. Williams. The covers are tantalising works of art, just as deserving of being framed and hung on the wall of a bookshop as being read. The art director of the magazine is artist Margaux Williamson from Canada, known for her dense and vibrant paintings, and so it is no surprise to hear that Dan takes more of a painterly approach to his graphic covers.
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Hanna Hanra edits Beat, the quarterly music magazine distributed free in records shops, music venues, clothing stores and restaurants around the world. The publication began showing up in the likes of Rough Trade and Sister Ray in 2010, noticeable for its colourful covers and emphasis on contemporary style and photography over pop nostalgia. As well as making the magazine, Hanna writes for the likes of The Guardian, Vogue, GQ Style and The Sunday Times, and has spent many evenings DJing in various clubs worldwide. We start the week off speaking with Hanna after the release of issue 14 of Beat.
Makeshifts’s Steve Daniels offers a fine overview of the reality of starting your own magazine.
An exhibition about Studio International’s sixties heyday as a voice for change looks interesting; London, til 3 May.
Check out this year’s D&AD editorial design jury, a strong line-up to which Wired’s Billy Sorrentino has been added. Play nicely, people! Select some great magazines!
Artist Ana Strumpf has fun with magazine covers.
Steve Watson and Cathy from Anorak share their magazine advice c/o Good Fruit, Monday 16 April.
To be tested: Adobe’s collaboration with Khoi Vinh, Layup, a new design app for app creation.
Reportagen is an independent Swiss magazine that brings you swift, short and enticing reports from around the world (written in German). The book-sized publication always boasts a bright, typographic cover, with text laid out like a traditional pamphlet – almost a contents page. Infographics and fun cartoons abound, and in the recent bright green issue 21 we were particularly taken by a pig illustration by Claudia Blum.
We love these covers for travel magazine 38Hours, which follow a simple but effective template. Each of the A5 issues focuses on a different European city, and the editors work closely with local bloggers and journalists to ensure a personal and knowledgeable perspective. The front covers similarly convey a sense of insider-knowledge and capture the cities very accurately through typography and colour alone.
The new issue of men’s independent Port lands next week, with a new format and redesign based around their move from quarterly to biannual. ‘Whilst we have loved creating and sharing the 15 quarterly issues over the years,’ explains founder/editor-in-chief Dan Crowe, ‘we’re looking forward to making something more refined, satisfying, reflective – more, perhaps, like a vintage glass of port.’
We’ve been fans of Steven Gregor’s new Gym Class cover since he revealed it at last month’s Printout. The bold and satirical statement is definitely on point, and it taps into something that we’ve been feeling for quite a while here at magCulture: namely our concern about the more derivative designs of many contemporary publications. We got in touch with the Gym Class creator to find out more, intrigued about whether the characteristically playful Steven is using the statement as a light-hearted provocation, or whether he is articulating a deeper concern about magazine making today.
When Steven Gregor unveiled this design as the front cover of the new issue of his magazine-about-magazines Gym Class at the last Printout, I remember wondering whether he’d go through with it. I needn’t have worried; it’s now available for pre-order now and the message remains the same.