G321 Foundation Portfolio: Front Cover Analysis essay and labelled analysisTask: Find two front covers from music magazines. These front covers will be used for your analysisof double page spreads and contents pages, as well as the covers themselves. Find out about thetarget audience of the magazines. Make sure the magazines are targeted to different audiences andare of different genresYour essay will compare and contrast two front covers from different magazines and you need toprovide labelled analysis and an essay on: Target audience and need House Style The Guttenberg Design Principle Main image/images Masthead Lead article/Model Credit/CoverlinesThe structure of the essay should provide analysis of your first magazine, using the headings above,then your second. There should then be a comparison of both magazines, commenting upondifferences and similarities.Deadline 15th February
Target audience and needThe target audience of the NME magazine is representedBy the editorial techniques used within the image, layoutand text. We can tell the target audience is aged 16 – 25 dueto the genre of music featured usually: indie, alternative andmost of the time male dominated bands. However within thisissue the vibrant red used within the Masthead and main storytitle, contrasts with the blue background and the yellow clothingthat the members of The Stone Roses are wearing so that themagazine stands out. This is because of the contents of the magazine, the fact that the Stone Rosesare returning is good news to fans of the NME. The median age for a reader of NME is aged 25therefore it is easy to tell what the magazine is aiming for in terms of appearance.The house style of NME can be identified each time by the different aspects that occur in everymagazine. Firstly the mast head is always in the top left corner of the magazine in a bold sans seriffont; this creates a recognisable identity for the magazine so readers can easily spot it. Anotherfeature that is re-occurring is that the main headline is usually in a similar font or colour to the masthead, this makes the magazine seem less cluttered and easier to read. The barcode and date alsoplay a part in the house style as it is positioned in the bottom right corner in every issue.When considering the Guttenburg design principal it is easy to dissect the magazine into the 5sections that are considered: Primary optical area, axis of orientation, weak fallow area, strongfallow area and finally the terminal area. Firstly looking at the primary optical area (top left handcorner), the masthead has been put here as our eyes are automatically attracted to this side of thepage therefore the reader instantly knows what magazine they are reading. To the right of this, thestrong fallow area contains 2 images and text advertising free posters inside. This has been put hereas we acknowledge it more than if it where further down the page. In the weaker fallow area(bottom left corner) the headline starts here so it is noticeable for the reader and can span acrossthe magazine, finally the terminal area is where the date and barcode have been placed, this isbecause it is the last place our eyes are drawn to and has little impact on the reader.The main image used on the front cover of this magazine is a long shot of the band The Stone Roses.We can see it is a long shot as all parts of the band members body’s are within the frame fullyextended. The clothes that the band is wearing contain bright and vibrant colours, this makes themstand out against the backdrop and highlights each member. The style of clothing shows thepersonality of the band, with loose and baggy items that shows they are laidback. looking into thebackground we can see a mountainous terrain as to suggest that the band are standing on top of the
world due to their huge success, this is significant to the return of the Roses as they are a heavilyrespected band. The other images in the stronger fallow area are two posters of Ian Brown and theStone Roses. They have been put here to persuade the reader into buying the magazine as free giftsare usually a bonus.The masthead of the magazine is presented in a sans serif font as the target audience of themagazine care more about the music content as readers of the NME are avid music listeners. Thebold style of font stands out against the background as block letters are easily noticeable; along withthis the vibrant red contrasts with the blue in order to highlight it the most. The mast head willalways be found in the top right hand corner of the magazine, this is to give the magazine a sense ofidentity with regular readers.The lead article of the magazine is announcing that The Stone Roses have re-united and arereturning to the industry. It has been printed in a similar font to the mast head to show that it alsoshares some importance in the magazine. Looking at the model credit underneath it has been madeclear what the article will be talking about as it is highlighted in yellow. This allows the reader tounderstand the content without reading the magazine. Cover lines have been placed around the topof the magazine to create room for the powerful picture of the band. These cover lines also addinformation to the reader as they have further knowledge of the content.Looking at the front cover of UNCUT magazine we can see that it is targeting a much older audienceapproximately 25 – 45 years old generally male. This is because of the simple and organised layoutthat delivers the content of the magazine clear and easy to its readers, along with the use of dull andsofter colours that are stereotypically related with middle aged men.The house style of UNCUT always sees a medium close up of eitherAn artist or band members. This is to make the magazine morePersonal to either the artist or reader as it gives off the feel thatThis issue has been dedicated to them. Another form of itsHouse style is that you can always find cover lines on the left andRight hand side of the page, when magazines do this it is creatingItself an identity that can be related to every time you see theMagazine.The design principal has clearly been considered in the layout ofthis magazine as the first thing we are drawn to in the primary opticalarea is an advertisement for a free cd. We are then drawn down the page on the axis of orientationreading each cover line at a time, this is a good technique to persuade the reader to buy themagazine as they have been projected the content easily. Finally the less important articles havebeen placed in the weaker fallow area as it is vital to convey the main content of the magazine.
Again the same in almost every magazine, the barcode and date have been placed in the terminalarea so that the reader does not have to handle this information.The original image of Jimmy Hendrix has been taken from further photography earlier on in hiscareer; this is because it is a tribute issue to Hendrix and to his readers. It is an image of him blowingout smoke, something he was commonly related to due to his heavy drug use. Knowing this I amable to acknowledge the fact that there has been no editorial technique used on the image as it wasoriginally taken in black and white. However in keeping the image the same they have given theissue a sophisticated feel as it is clean and crisp.UNCUT magazine uses a serif font on its masthead due to the target audience of the magazine. It ismostly Middle aged men that tend to read UNCUT therefore using a serif font gives the magazinesome respectability as it looks sophisticated. The 3D effect that has been used allows the magazineto stand out with an identifiable image for every reader.The lead article is in a different text to the other cover lines so that the reader can highlight what themagazine is about. The articles on jimmy Hendrix are all in similar colours in order to group themtogether so that they have some recognition. Other smaller cover lines have been highlighted in avibrant red and white font so that they can still be seen at first glance.The two front covers that i have chosen to analyse vary with different editorial techniques in orderto target a specific audience. Within the NME magazine the house style that is used targets ayounger audience than UNCUT due to the minimalistic layout and vibrant colours used. Looking atUNCUT we can see that there is a use of dull and soft colours along with a masthead in serif font, thisappeals to an older audience as information is more important. Both of the magazines useGuttenburgs design principal as the layout follows the suggested style that appeals to readers. Anexample can be that the ‘Free CD’ logo is found in the primary optical area of UNCUT magazine, theplace where our eyes are drawn to first and within the NME the free posters that are advertised inthe stronger fallow point. The images used in both magazines are very different from one another.This is because UNCUT dedicates the issue to Jimmy Hendrix therefore it looks more professionaland posed. Whereas within NME the image of Stone Roses perceives the band to be god likecharacters standing on top of a mountain, this is somewhat promoting the band when UNCUTappears to be making more of a statement. Analysing both of the Mastheads it is easy to notice thedifferent styles of fonts used. Due to UNCUT appealing to middle aged men it is using a serif font sothat it appears more organised and clean cut however the use of a 3D effect gives the mastheadmore iconography. NME however is using big, bold, block lettering that contrasts against thebackground with a vibrant red. This appeals to the younger audience as it is an imposing icon thatcan easily be recognised. The main title and cover lines of both the magazines vary drastically, this isbecause within NME it is partly used as a promotional device as there is little text in order to see themain image. The main story is in a similar font to the masthead so that it shares some importancewithin the front cover. However the main story in UNCUT is lightly highlighted so that it does notgive the magazine unbalance.