Double Page Spread Analysis – “MADONNA” Header The header is striking and attention-grabbing, therefore emphasising her importance within the article. With the simple masthead only outlining the artist’s name, it demonstrates her focal aspect of the spread and creates an impression of a greater reputation. This implies that she is at such a high level she needs no introduction or catchy buzz words to draw attention to her – simply her name will suffice in being conspicuous. The subtitle, a journalist and photographer credit, also draws in an audience - these names carry star power and are often recognisable, particularly to the primary target audience with a prior interest in music. Additionally, with Steven Klein credited in relation to the portrait, this draws curiosity to the overall page spread – due to his reputable status as an American photographer to many stars such as Britney Spears, Tom Ford and other prestigious artists, it depicts the article as more creditable and well respected. With adds another layer of interest to the page and helps maximise the potential target audience. To emphasise the great status and power held by Madonna, the kicker is utilised to build an air of importance. The simple statement, “THE ONE AND ONLY,” exaggerates the artist’s significance and appears exclusive to the double page; this portrayal links in with her depiction as a powerful, central character. This kicker also carries a duality of meaning: it is a play on words as a popular song is called “The One and Only,” therefore it could be an amusing connection to these lyrics and therefore targeting many members of our society who are most likely familiar with this association due to the power of pop culture within our civilisation. In tandem with each other, the masthead, kicker and subtitle all combine to create a lasting powerful impression that would entice an audience to read on further into the interview. Layout The mise-en-scene creates a straightforward, minimalist appearance. Due to this, it creates a sense within the reader that the article is of a higher quality – a more structured page layout is commonly associated with more “high-brow” journalism and publications such as Vanity Fair and Vogue. This causes the article to be more respected and potentially causes a greater interest in reading the article as a person may believe it will therefore be of a higher quality. This mature, sophisticated layout is created by the page following and defying many conventions of magazines. The layout is comprised of six columns, with a clear division between text and image that appears more clean and professional. The conventional page numbers within the footer and gutters separating the columns create a more familiar looking article: it clearly gives an impact that it is uncomplicated to read and therefore more tempting. There is a clear central focus due to the alignment of text and headers within the middle of the page: this could potentially be to represent Madonna as a ‘central character’ within the music industry. Moreover, it enhances a more intelligible feel to the layout, appearing more clean and precise. The layout has been well thought out and is therefore constructed to convey this professional tone in its mannerisms, meaning it henceforth optimised for the primary target audience of the magazine so it will not alienate them from continuing to read. The lack of sidebar, pull quotes and overlapping pictures/text creates an uncluttered visual appearance. Unlike a pop magazine which is often interpreted as disorganised, this instead portrays itself as focused and competent. It appears factual, while also coherent and eloquent, therefore it is of maximum interest to the audience of the magazine. Image The image is an imposing, grand image. It defies typical convention of images within a double page spread by the lack of direct address – this contributes to the portrayal of Madonna as having a higher status than the reader, as if she is above you and therefore will not directly look at you. Instead, she is clearly the spectacle, emphasising her value within the spread. The clean, neutral background of a solid grey colour links in with the polished, clean pretence of the magazine and also draws less attention than the model, thus causing the reader to focus more on this. The image itself is audacious and confident, taking up the entirety of the page in a close up. The theory of the male gaze could be applied to this photograph – she could be interpreted as being sexualised due to her heavy makeup and the action of her biting the cloth. Juxtaposing with this, it could be interpreted from a feminist perspective: her high status (as created by the remainder of the article) could mean she is empowered and portraying herself in such a manner of her own accord.
Double Page Spread Analysis – “MADONNA” Typography The typography is utilised to create a comprehensible, clean atmosphere. The titles are justified and large, therefore attracting attention and linking to convention. The fonts are all similar, with around 4 fonts used overall – this creates a cohesive impression and links to the page being uncluttered. The titles in relation to Madonna are sans serif, therefore they appear modern and edgy, possibly drawing in a new younger audience who may be less familiar with her. One of the most important decisions in relation to font is how the double page spread follows convention with the interview. It reads similar to a play: the questions and names are bolded, while actions are clearly displayed in brackets. This makes the interaction simple to read and adds a difference from the typical blocks of text that are commonly in interviews. Colour scheme The colour scheme consists of a blue, cool-toned palette. This could be considered as defying convention due to the femininity of Madonna being portrayed. Alternatively, it could be seen that this is feeding into the male gaze theory and attracting a more masculine audience because blue colours are typically symbolic of males. In addition, blue is muted and calming, therefore it may be more accessible and enticing to an audience compared to garish, vibrant colours that are typically found within a pop music magazine. The colour scheme follows convention as there is one main theme of colour – the blues and teals are all related and appear cohesive. Likewise, in the main body of text, a black and white approach is used as this is the most easily legible colour scheme for a large amount of text. Target audience The primary target audience could be difficult to distinguish; for reasons discussed earlier, a male and female audience could be enticed by the magazine. This could be an effective technique in reaching as wide an audience as possible and therefore maximising potential profits. Nevertheless, I think the primary audience is female, higher class and young adult. A niche market of anarchists could be attracted due to the defiance of convention (for example, a blue colour scheme in a feminine article). Moreover, fans of Madonna could be attracted due to the recognisability she carries – she is a household name and therefore may draw interest in this regard. I think personally an older and more sophisticated, high class audience would be targeted as the magazine has a much cleaner, more reputable overall aesthetic. I think for another audience they would be more so attracted by the more ‘exciting’, informal vibrancy of another magazine such as NME or SHOUT.