With three weeks until ModMag17 we continue our countdown with Lydia Garnett from Accent. Lydia, a photographer, makes the magazine with journalist Lucy Nurnberg and designer Luke Tudor Griffiths, and their recent third print edition (it started as online-only) saw the title mature into a key example of the new magazines reflecting life outside the ordinary.
What’s your favourite cover of your magazine?
The Accent cover is a chance for us to celebrate the extraordinary, inspirational heroes of the world. We feature people from all walks of life with an incredible story to share.
The cover of issue one featured Kia Labejia, a young New York Vogue ballroom dancer and HIV activist. On the cover of issue two we published a topless image of Lucia Lucas, a fabulous trans opera singer. On the cover of number three we profiled Kodo, a genderfluid Japanese Buddhist monk and make-up artist, who cites RuPaul as a major inspiration.
The latest issue of Accent (above) represents how far we’ve come. Our art director and designer Luke went into this issue with confidence and took the magazine to new levels in terms of the design. Now we have three issues, it’s nice to look back at the collection and see things becoming distinctly Accent; cover stars serving serious eye contact, strong photographic elements in the design and an 80s boldness.
What has been your magazine highlight of 2017?
My 2017 mag highlights have been the night of feminist performance art and readings at the first Accent supper club, hosting a punk gig with FARAI at the Fred Perry store in a makeshift Accent Live! dive bar and launching the strongest issue of Accent yet. Last month Lucy and I took a trip the West Coast was pretty epic and I’ve just started teaching at LCC on the Magazine, Publishing and Journalism BA which is a constant source of inspiration.
What was the one mistake that taught you the most about making magazines?
For one reason or another, I’ve learnt that you can never ask enough questions or see enough proofs! It’s essential to stick to your gut, have great people around you and to make confident decisions.
Which other speaker are you most looking forward to hearing at ModMag?
Mushpit, Takahiro Kinoshita of Popeye and the host with the most Liv Siddall.
What will you be talking about at ModMag?
I’ll be chatting about our experience of making Accent so far, from the years spent making an online zine to some very intense (but also hilarity-filled) production weeks, our approach to distribution including the occasional nightmare stockist and lots of low-budget but high fun-level parties.
The Modern Magazine 2017
Thursday 2 November (9am to 5.30pm)
Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL (map)