Magazine Research and Analysis<br />By Samuel Ewen<br />
NME front cover<br />Colour scheme:<br />On the cover of NME there is a limited pallet of colour with a large use of white surrounding the image. This draws the audience’s attention to the central image. Also, the words ‘Pulp Return’ are in a strong shade of red similar to the masthead, this accentuates the words and states that this must be the most important story in the magazine. This red contrasts the black and white of the rest of the cover and follows the colour scheme associated with the punk/indie/Britpop genre of music. <br />The black, white and grey composition of the image also supports the ‘retro style’ the magazine is trying to symbolise.<br />Imagery:<br />The fact that there is only one single image in the centre of the page further shows the importance held by the story associated with it. The pose held within the picture with two fingers raised to the potential audience appeals to anybody who is inclined to listen to this genre of music. It demonstrates the non-conformist and rebellious attitudes that the band promote.<br />Text:<br />The majority of the fonts on the cover are conventional and have been chosen for ease of reading. Also, they closely mimic the font of the masthead which helps keep a theme and promote the magazines sense of individuality. The text above ‘Pulp Return’ is the only text to break with this theme. However, this more informal font ties in with the image that lies behind it, breaking conventions and appealing to the target audience of the magazine. <br />Overall:<br />Overall the cover is pleasurable to look at, despite the message the image is conveying. The colour scheme is aesthetically pleasing and will draw lovers of the punk/indie/Britpop genre toward it. The composition is simple, allowing ease of perception and the text is set out in a straight manner which is simple to read. <br />
NME contents page<br />Colour scheme:<br />On this contents page it follows a simple choice of colours of mainly red, black and white. This is typical of NME and gives a sense that the magazine is well planned and follows a popular theme. The way the colour is distributed throughout the page is pleasing to look at and makes it simple to understand and gain information from. The most common colour on the page is white and further supports the simplicity. This also helps the contents page attain a reader friendly feeling. <br />Text:<br />The fonts on the page are all simple, conventional fonts and allows the reader to use the magazine very easily. Also, almost all of the fonts on the page are similar to that of the masthead font, keeping with the familiar theme. The important pieces of text are in a bold font and this signifies their importance, hence drawing the eyes toward the significant information on the page. On the left of the page there is a band index using an extremely small font. This text fills the page from top to bottom and demonstrates that there is a large amount of content in the magazine. <br />Also, below the article, written in yellow, is the instruction on how to subscribe to NME. This use of yellow text stands out from the page and will draw a potential subscriber’s eyes toward it. <br />Imagery:<br />The picture offset of the centre of the page is also presented with a red tone to it. This supports the colour scheme and is pleasing to the eye. It shows a band performing live and reinforces the enjoyment experienced at a gig. It then links this enjoyment to the magazine. <br />The only other image on the page is the tiny image of the NME magazine to the right of the yellow text. This simply shows what you are subscribing to. <br />Overall:<br />Overall the contents page has a simple look and appears easy to use. The composition is aesthetically pleasing. The article in the centre of the page implies that the magazine is full of articles and information. Another point is that contents pages of NME usually have a similar overall look. This helps keep the theme and may also promote brand loyalty.<br />
NME double page spread<br />Colour scheme:<br />The colour scheme across this double page spread is very simple and consists of white, red and black, with white as the dominant colour. This mainly white look is commonly used by NME as can be seen on the cover and also the contents page. This light look gives it a modern, clean feel and makes the article look organised.<br />NME is typically printed in a newspaper style on non-glossy paper and the black on white colour scheme helps to reinforce this fact. Also, including the picture, the red white and black fits in with the colour scheme used traditionally by NME. Sticking with this colour scheme will apply to buyers of this magazine as it is familiar and simple. <br />Text:<br />The main piece of text to consider is the quote off centre of the page. This breaks from the conventional horizontal and traditional look of the text below it. This is the only part of the article that looks disorganised and helps to keep the piece interesting. Were all the text to be traditional, the article may give off a boring impression. This large font will appeal to an audience who are flicking through the magazine and also accurately demonstrates the type of person the woman who said the quote is. This is further shown by the mismatched sizes of the fonts that comprises it are. As a contrast, the text below is very conventional and this is probably down to ease of reading. <br />Overall:<br />In its entirety, the double page spread looks appealing and draws the reader to finding out what the large font is referring to. It has a nice, neat composition. It also looks relatively simple with the white on black theme and prompts a positive response from the potential buyer. Fans of Lilly Allen can see from the anti-authoritarian text that they will enjoy what is in this article.<br />
Q front cover<br />Imagery:<br />On this cover, the main focal point is clearly the pictures of the artists. As there is such a large range of popular artists in the image, this will therefore appeal to a large demographic that enjoy popular music, the artists on the cover are wearing mainstream, largely accepted clothing which will mimic the style of the target audience of the magazine. I also notice that Paul McCartney is central of the image and seems to be where your eyes first go. Mr McCartney will appeal to a huge audience because of his success with the Beatles and this will help to sell the magazine. Also the artists are looking straight at the camera which is engaging with the audience and encouraging them to buy the magazine. <br />Colour scheme:<br />On this front cover, there is again a limited intentional use of different colours. The background fades from the masthead white to a grey floor. This effect allows for the pictures of the artists to stand out against the background and is perhaps used to imply that the artists are by far the most important thing in the magazine. In the top left and just above the artists is a large use of the colour red. This stands out also against the bland coloured background and will most likely be the first thing your eye meets as you see the cover. This promotes brand awareness and for a regular buyer of Q, it will make the magazine very easy to find.<br />Text to picture ratio:<br />An obvious point to make about this cover is the fact that there is actually very little text compared to the size of the picture. This may be to suggest that Q has a large picture content and is aimed at the kind of audience who appreciate that.<br />Text:<br />There is not a large array of text to mention. however, at the top right of the page, there is some black text that reads “Artists of the Century.” with this being some of the only text on the page, it supports the point that this is the most important article in the magazine.<br />
Q contents page<br />Colour scheme:<br />This contents page displays a very simple colour scheme of red, white and grey. The block colour promotes a simple, easy to use layout. The red theme sticks to the shade of the masthead which promotes a central theme throughout the magazine. The large use of white supports the simple to use feel and implies that this magazine is more formal and informative than a magazine such as Kerrang! or Smash Hits. This is a way of appealing to perhaps a more educated audience who prefer a more conventional colour scheme and composition. <br />Imagery:<br />With few images, there is not much to cover. However, the imagery on the page is used to an effect. The picture in the bottom left is not for instance a punk band trashing their instruments, it is of a well dressed, upper middle class solo artist. This assumes that the readers of this magazine are likely to want to read and relate to this article. This is a demonstration of directly appealing to the demographic associated with Q magazine. Also, the only thing to break with the formality is the image of the magazine front cover in the top right. This image is slightly offset. This is perhaps to break with the rigid theme of the rest of the page. <br />Text to picture ratio: <br />Sticking with the informative theme, this contents page consists mainly of bulk text with only 3 images breaking from the mass of writing. <br />Text:<br />There is a large amount of bulk text on this page but it almost all follows the same font. It could be described as a comprehensive contents page and it ties in with the target audience that clearly prefer to take in information in bulk text form. Alongside this, all the text on the paGe is horizontal, further supporting this point.<br />
Q double page spread<br />Colour scheme:<br />On this double page spread, Q have decided to use the popular red, black and white colour scheme seen across music magazines concerning popular music. The red on the page mimics the shade of Q’s masthead and helps to keep a theme recognised by buyers of Q. <br />Also, this page has a large use of the colour white contrasted to black boxes and text. This is similar to a default newspaper style and informs the reader that the information within the page is trusted and straightforward information. <br />Text:<br />The text on this page sticks to a very neat and simple font, this makes it easy for the audience to take in the information on the page. The text is all horizontally aligned rather than offset which implies the demographic this magazine is aimed at prefers to avoid the outlandish, slanted text that would be found in Kerrang!<br />Imagery:<br />The imagery found on this page has an intentional style. Unlike less formal magazines, the pictures are not of band members laughing or performing, but much more serious and to be taken seriously. The largest picture on the page demonstrates the professional and technical element involved in making and music. This will appeal to those who appreciate the work that goes on in production and will hence apply to the more intelligent of music magazine buyers. <br />Overall:<br />Overall the page looks neat and tidy. The composition is easy on the eye and the page is not cluttered by giant exclamation marks or speech bubbles. My impression is that this double page spread would appeal to an older audience (18-30) than kerrang as the text is more comprehensive and the use of colour is more limited. It comes across as more informative rather than opinionated. <br />
Kerrang! Front Cover<br />Imagery:<br />On this page, there is a large amount of imagery which is intentional as the demographic that buys this magazine enjoy a small text to picture ratio. The main picture beneath the masthead, of Hayley Williams is not a conventional portrait picture but a ‘fun’ picture where her head is on an angle, further supporting the aim to appeal to the younger demographic. The colours within this main image are also bright and appealing. The target audience of kerrang! will have been found to like pictures of bands on the cover as a preferance. All the images on this front cover are of artists looking at the camera and directing their attention to the buyer of the magazine, this will encourage people to buy the magazine.<br />Colour scheme:<br />The colour scheme on the front cover of Kerrang! is noticeably more lively than many other music magazines sold alongside it, this is linked to the target audience in the way that the buyers of Kerrang! will be brightly dressed and in the younger 15-20 age range. Typical of the genre of music, the magazine displays a combination of black, white and red. This scheme allows readers to recognise kerrang! And will sell copies. The particularly visible colour of yellow has been chosen to draw the eyes toward the most important lines of text on the page, such as the word ‘win’ and the band names. <br />Overall:<br />Overall this front cover has a ‘scrap book’ feel to it and is a busy looking page. It is aesthetically pleasing due to the colours and the composition. This cover would clearly appeal to the right audience because of the techniques used.<br />
Kerrang! Contents Page<br />Text: <br />The text on the page is noticeably brief compared to other music magazines, however, the potential buyers of this magazine will be looking for this amount of text. Also the fonts used are an important point. Kerrang! often uses a distressed or ‘cracked’ font. <br />This will closely apply to the lifestyle of the readers as it promotes the rebellious and unconventional themes that the readers want to see.<br />Text to picture ratio:<br />On this contents page, the amount of imagery used far outweighs that of Q magazine. Effectively, the top half of the page is an image which suggests various things. I believe that this is due to the demographic Kerrang! are aiming at. The type of customer they are aiming at will perhaps prefer to take in information by way of pictures rather than bulk text. Even the lower half of the page is scattered with images. <br />Imagery:<br />There is extensive use of imagery and it seems to dominate the page. The picture at the top is specifically low in exposure to bring out shadows on Marilyn’s face and body. This is characteristic of his music and hence the buyers of the magazine. The use of imagery brightens up an otherwise relatively limited colour scheme and will encourage the audience to buy it. <br />Colour scheme:<br />The colour scheme aside from the imagery is actually a basic black, white and yellow. Including the image, black is a colour often associated with this genre of music and white and yellow are central colours for this magazine. Consideing the whole page, it is quite a colourful contents page which readers will find attractive. <br />Overall:<br />The overall look of the page suggests youth and rebellion. Alot of the imagery is not horizontally positioned which adds to this fact. <br />
Text:<br />the text in this article is seemingly uncharacteristic of Kerrang! Judging by other issues and the covers and contents, there is a large amount of bulk text, as that would not necessarily appeal to the previously specified, younger target audience. Also because of the font used and the layout of the text, this passage appears to look informative. However, as this is the news section it makes sense to set it out in a conventional manner.<br />Kerrang! Double page spread<br />Colourscheme:<br />The colour scheme on this double page spread are mainly dark colours ranging from light grey to black. These colours are typical of the genre of music this magazine is aimed at and also ties in with the fact that this is the news of the magazine and black, grey and white are default colours associated with this. There is one word of red text on the page and this is news. Not only is red a typical colour associated with the demographic of the magazine, it also draws your eyes away from the blandness of the rest of the page and helps the article to be aesthetically pleasing. <br />Imagery:<br />The woman in the image is in a gothic/metal band and consequently she is portrayed wearing a lot of black clothing and black eye makeup. This will fit in with the audiences assumed style preference and will sell magazines. Also, the lady in the picture is staring at the camera, witch connects to the reader and allows the like minded buyers of Kerrang! To relate to the story to her right. Also, the lady’s t-shirt bears a ‘love us or hate us’ slogan, showing a unity between lovers of this kind of music.<br />Overall:<br />Overall the composition of the double page spread has a dark feel to it. This is most probably because of the subject matter of the article. As the passage is about tragedy, a dim, grey and black theme is associated with death and hence applies to the text well. <br />
A particular slide catching your eye?
Clipping is a handy way to collect important slides you want to go back to later.