Friday, 18 February 2011

Assignment 4: Real or Fake Ideas

The purpose of this assignment is to reflect on all the techniques and ethical choices explored in this part of the course and help to define my own stance on the ethics of manipulation in order to illustrate an imaginary book or magazine.

Bearing in mind the fact that the covers are there mainly to attract an audience, to promote sales and quite often designed/interpreted by photographers, art directors and illustrators.

The remit was quite open. I could make up the idea from scratch or take a book I already know and design an alternative photographic cover illustration taking photographs specifically for this purpose. I could also explore many areas of manipulation to complete a successful cover such as shading, combining two elements or extending areas.

Having thought about this for a while I eventually decided on a magazine front rather than a book. I completed some research on magazine design by looking at several different magazine covers and also looking at various websites which gave tips on how to complete this process. Some ideas I took on board others I dismissed as either not an essential "rule" as many professional publications did not follow them.

Magforum: The secrets of magazine cover design - part 1

items to possibly include are :

Masthead:(logo) The name of the magazine displayed in a specific typeface.

Dateline: Month and year of publication, often with the price. Most monthly publications hit the news-stands the month before the cover date.

Main image: Invariably a single image of a model or item being promoted by specialist magazines.

Coverlines: Some magazines use a lot of cover lines, which are distributed around the main image without detracting from it too much. A mistake often made with cover lines is that they run over an image that has a lot of colour changes, rendering the words invisible.

Main cover line: On the example given this is very large - taking up almost a quarter of the magazine cover.

Left third: This section of the magazine cover is very important for sales in shops where the vendors do not display the magazines full-frontage. The top fifth of the cover - usually dominated by the masthead - may be the vital part in supermarkets, where magazines are displayed differently.

Bar code: Standard bar code used by retailers.

Selling line: Short, sharp description of the title's main marketing point (for the example given: 'The world's No 1 magazine for young women') or perhaps setting out its editorial philosophy.

Six main aspects to consider are.
  • what is the purpose of a magazine cover/how to reach a target audience/genre?
  • the colours to use.
  • the main graphic
  • title/taglines/screamers
  • design
  • overall impression.
Design a Magazine Front Cover in Photoshop Video –

Was interesting to watch.

Hopefully I will take on board all these ideas and create a successful magazine cover.

A very useful site with lots of ideas to take on board.


  1. Interesting reading.

    Just got the nuts & bolts of this done today, still need to add some "ethical philosophizing" but the main bit's done.

    Also, started a KAP blog, getting a bit sidetracked.

  2. Thank you, for stopping by :o) Your blog has helped reasurre me along the way.

    New Blog looks good...onwards and upwards to the last Assignment for us both!!

  3. Submitted and waiting for the tutor-lashing.

    Final push, yes, should be ok for the September window.
    Finish this module by April and start People & Place.
    Is that the next one for you too?

  4. Tutor-report just in.
    He was very pleased with it!
    Which is nice.

  5. Hi, am terrible at checking back on my comments! Glad he was pleased with it :o)

  6. I was lucky to get APEL for P&P so will be either doin L2 PWDP or Social Documentary. Although I'd like to change tack and do Soc Doc am thinking will do the PWDP so I can apply that knowledge to preparing the Soc Doc images:o)

    Good luck with P&P it looks fun to do.