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Magazine Planning Steven Staff

Mood Boards

Mood Board 1 This is my first Mood Board. The idea behind it was to create a poster for a made up festival called ‘Smile Fest’ which would demonstrate the kinds of bands and styles of music that readers of my magazine (Wasted) enjoy. I felt this would be a really simple and effective way of showing the desired style for my magazine. The poster demonstrates my intended style in two ways. First of all the bands I have chosen to feature on the poster are all ones of a similar genre, and ones that would appeal to readers of my magazine. Secondly, my choice of fonts reflect the style of fonts I will be featuring in my magazine. They will be mostly san serif fonts with sections of the letters missing in order to give the impression of them being worn or damaged in some way.

Mood Board 2 This is my second Mood Board. The idea behind this one was to demonstrate various different brands that might interest readers of my magazine. Unlike my first Mood Board the fonts in this one are all property of the brands so I cannot feature them in my magazine. However the main intention of this Mood Board was to show what kind of person would read and enjoy my magazine. It demonstrates what kind of clothes they wear, shoes they wear, channels they watch/listen to, drinks they enjoy and typical hobbies like games consoles and listening to music.

Flat Plans

Flat Plan 1 This was my first flat plan design. It features my first masthead idea which included the tagline (This Week In Punk) positioned above the text, I did this because I felt that it made the overall design seem more like one complete section rather than just a random grouping of fonts. I also gave the masthead an underlying exclamation mark which has been flipped on it’s side. I did this because I like the way it underlines the name as well as working to emphasise the text. The picture was taken from google images and has been cut out and placed onto a black background because I thought black was a good choice of colour, given the overall tone and intended style of the magazine. The graphic in the middle of the page is an internet image of the band’s (A Day To Remember) new album cover and behind it is a shape which I created myself using Photoshop. I have included this on the page because I felt that the top half of the page was too bare so this graphic makes the entire page seem a little busier. The pink font was taken from I re-coloured it because I wanted it to stand out against the rest of the cover and also I wanted it to reflect the type of band that was featured. The text ‘On Their New Album’ lets you know what the article is going to primarily focus on and I decided to use a banner to display this to make the cover look more interesting as without it, it would’ve looked slightly 2 dimensional and dull. All of the supporting text at the top and bottom of the page has been done in the same font to keep a feeling of continuity on the page.

Flat Plan 1 Planning This was the first thing I created. It is my first idea for a masthead, the font comes from and it features my tagline positioned above the main text and an exclamation mark which has been re-positioned to serve as an exclamation mark and an underline for the text.

Flat Plan 1 Planning Next I added the photograph which I took off of google images. I then cut it out and positioned it over a blank, black background. I also re-sized the image so it took up the entire top half of the page.

Flat Plan 1 Planning My next stage of design was to create the text for the top and bottom of the page. I decided to use the same font for each section to give the magazine a more continual, overall feel. I liked the grey banner background at the top of the page because this way it doesn't make the masthead look like it has been placed halfway down the page. However I decided not to use the banner at the bottom because I felt it would make the page look to simplistic and I didn’t think it was a particularly good design idea.

Flat Plan 1 Planning Next I added a banner at the bottom of the page. On top of it is where I decided to place the subheading. The font comes from and I then put the banner at an angle to make the whole page look more three dimensional.

Flat Plan 1 Planning The final thing I did was to create the main headline. The font came from and I re-coloured it pink to make it stand out against the rest of the black and grey colour scheme. I think this gives the page more depth and stops it from looking to bland. As well as this it lets people know that this is the main headline of the page, and it reflects the type of band which is featured in the article. Also I added some final touches to make it look more like an actual magazine. For this I added a price and a barcode in the top right hand corner.

Flat Plan 2 This is my second design for my magazine cover. I much prefer this one to the first. I think I have really discovered the importance of having a good picture on the front cover. I have a different mast head design. This one is much simpler and much larger with it’s primary function to simply catch people’s attention and to let people know the name of the publication. It features the same tagline as the first flat plan but this time I have included small text above the masthead (East Anglia) which identifies which region this magazine is being sold in (see ‘Magazine Unique Selling Point’). This cover is extremely busy, it was inspired by a lot of Rock Sound covers which I studied. The franticness of the page suggests it is going to appeal to younger people because it is very attention seeking and energetic. There are several different fonts on the page. I tried not to use to many so it didn’t look to un-organised. I have also tried to change colour schemes only based on the type of band that the font is regarding.

Flat Plan 2 Planning First of all I took the image of Billie Joe Armstrong from google images and used it as the entire page background because I thought it was a really good photo, that would make a good magazine cover and would be easy to work with because the main image is in the centre which means it is easier to place things around the edges. The masthead is placed behind the image to make the cover more three dimensional and to ensure that the image is more noticeable than the masthead.

Flat Plan 2 Planning Next I added the main headline and the sub-heading. This is all done in the same colour but I used two different fonts so the headline stands out more and it is clear that that is the important part. I chose green because it is relevant to the main featured band (Green Day). I liked the font and I chose the wording because I felt it tied in well with the theme of the photograph, which is all about selfdestruction etc.

Flat Plan 2 Planning This text is intended to be the second most noticeable thing on the page. It is there to inform you of other big name bands which will be featured in the magazine. I didn’t need to use any bright colours or large eye catching fonts here, because that job is being done by other things on the cover. The hook here is simply the band names, nothing extra is needed, if people like the bands then they don’t need to be drawn in any more. The ‘+Plus’ is something which I intend to be a permanent feature for all of my covers.

Flat Plan 2 Planning These are the two secondary images of my cover. The top one is intended to draw attention to another big story within the magazine. Almost like a second main feature, but also in addition to the size of the article a picture has been included to break up the sea of text on the page and give potential readers something else to look at in addition to the main image. The bottom images are there to show people the free posters which are available. No band names have been included here because each of the bands are considered recognisable enough to not need their names to be shown. Also all of these pictures have been given a black border to make them stand out more against the background.

Flat Plan 2 Planning Here I have added another story which is intended to be quite an important feature in terms of capturing people’s attention. Download is a well known music festival which is very popular with my target audience and target age group (15-25). So all I have done is put the well known Download logo on my cover which is very recognisable and underneath it there is a multi-coloured sub-heading. The reason I made the sub-heading black and white was initially to make the last word (Headline?) stand out against the background colour. However I feel it also works well to put emphasise on the importance of the question being asked and also makes the whole thing more noticeable.

Flat Plan 2 Planning Here there are three additional features added to the page. The first is an image of Patrick Stump and a small amount of text. I have included a picture because I don’t think the artist featured is recognisable enough to be featured with just some text. The text is there to confirm the name of the artist for those who do not recognise him and to tell people what the article is going to be about. The barcode, price and website are there purely to make the cover look more realistic. Finally I included the blue text to fill the space on the page because otherwise it would have looked strange having a gap there.

Flat Plan 2 Planning This is the finished product. The final image I added was the sticker graphic, which I created on Photoshop by simply layering an effect over a circle shape and colouring it blue. I placed the text over the top and tried to use a text which was as noticeable as possible. I included the sticker because I noticed that it was a common feature on the cover of Rock Sound Magazine and just adds some additional content information onto the cover and reinforces the messy, quickly assembled feel of the whole cover.

Flat Plan 3 This is my third design. However it is the second version of what I have chosen as my front cover style. It has the same layout and masthead as Flat Plan 2 and it also features the ‘+Plus’ and the blue sticker graphic. For this cover I was trying to go for a much more slick look, that was not as busy and plays about a bit more with shapes and borders etc.

Flat Plan 3 Planning I started by taking another image from google images (this time of the Madden twins from Good Charlotte) and again using it as my background. I have used the same masthead and surrounding text but this time I have inverted the colours, using the invert tool on Photoshop, so the text will stand out more against the background colour.

Flat Plan 3 Planning Next I added the main headline and the sub heading. Much like Flat Plan 2 I have used the same colour for the headline and sub heading. However this time I have chosen to use the same font also. I have done this to make them both look more like one continuing sentence.

Flat Plan 3 Planning I have again used the ‘+Plus’ feature on my cover but this time at the bottom of the page. Also this time I have only featured three additional bands, because I was trying to make this cover a lot less busy than the previous one. As well as this, having fewer bands allows for them each to have a bigger space which means they have a bigger impact on people who look at the cover. Also I have included another large heading, this has been included here because it is another big name band which will capture reader attention. I have made the text blue because it stands out clearly against the black background.

Flat Plan 3 Planning I created a banner on the left hand side of the page. I decided to include this text on a banner to avoid it looking to symmetrical with the text on the other side of the page. The text on the banner says ‘Download Vs. Sonisphere’ which tells people the article will be concerned with comparing two of the countries most popular Rock music festivals.

Flat Plan 3 Planning Here I have simply added the same blue sticker graphic that I used on Flat Plan 2. However I have changed the text and the font used on the sticker to differentiate it from the previous design.

Flat Plan 3 Planning The final touches I made to the magazine were the addition of the barcode and the price and website, the colours of which I have inverted so they show up against the black background. As well as this I have added a border to the top and bottom of the headline and sub heading. I think this makes the text stand out more and it makes the banner look better because it now connects with something solid on both sides, making it look more realistic.

Unique Selling Point

Unique Selling Point My music magazine (Wasted) is going to be focusing mainly on Alternative and Punk Rock and will be similar to real life publications such as Kerrang!, Rock Sound and Metal Hammer (the latter only in design appearance not in musical content). It will feature stories on new albums, new bands, concerts, festivals and any other miscellaneous news from around the Rock community. My unique selling point is that the magazine will feature a small pamphlet inside each issue giving information on local bands and local gigs, depending on which area you live in, this will be known as the ‘Local Gig Guide’ and will feature different information depending on which area that particular magazine has been delivered to. There will be 12 areas covered by local teams. The 12 areas will be: North Scotland, South Scotland, Wales, West England, Midlands, East Anglia, London, South England, South-East England, North-West England, North-East England and Northern Ireland.

Masthead Designs

Masthead 1

This was the very first masthead that I decided to really work on and bring out of the planning stage. It was used on my first flat plan and is one of the two mast heads I have chosen for my final design. The font comes from the ‘Destroy’ section of, as does the exclamation mark however the above text is one which I took from the list on Photoshop. I re-positioned the exclamation mark so it would act as a kind of unconventional underline for the main body of text. I placed the sub-text above the rest because I think it makes it all fit well together really nicely. The only problem I have with this masthead is that it looks more like a logo for a company or brand rather than a magazine masthead.

Masthead 2

This is my second masthead design. This was actually one of the last designs I came up with but it is one of my favourites and is one of the two designs I have chosen for my final design. It is a very simple design. Just a large font from which I have re-sized so it takes up the entire top of the page and then I have added the subtext underneath. I think this design looks much more like a mast head than the previous design.

Masthead 3

This was one of my early mast head designs which I ultimately decided I didn’t like. I tried making an anarchy symbol over the W which I don’t think worked very well and the rest of the design was just a font taken offline.

Masthead 4

This is another of my early designs. It was my first design to feature my tagline which I eventually included in my two final designs. However I didn’t like this design because in the end I found it to simple and I think it lacks imagination.

Magazine Names

Magazine Names

 Scene  Distortion  Lyric  Smile  Shotgun  Sick  Stoked


Inspiration Kerrang! I liked this photo-shoot by Kerrang! In particular because I am considering using a female cover star for my magazine main image, and these photos demonstrate how you can photograph a female without making the outcome look seedy or in-appropriate.

I don’t particularly like the general layout of Kerrang’s front covers because I find to be to blocky and a little simplistic. However the thing I do like is the fonts they use, because they are large and eye catching. Also I like their double page spreads because they generally use really good photos and contain a lot of interesting interviews.

Inspiration Rock Sound Rock Sound is what really inspired my cover designs, I like the business of the pages because it really gives you a lot of information but manages to make it all look good at the same time. The covers don’t use a lot squares and big blocky fonts but rather packs in as much text as it can with a few pictures thrown in. Also I like the big simplistic mast head because it has no background colour and is easy to recognise. Rock Sound also makes really good use of the central images it uses, often having the cover stars in interesting or humorous poses which hint as to what the article inside is going to be about.

Inspiration Metal Hammer

I really like the layout of Metal Hammer’s covers because the images are always very central and important to the cover. The text usually takes second place and most of the thought is put into the image. As well as this I think the mast head is quite clever and different and I may try designing one like it. Also I have discovered that Metal Hammer usually does really good live photo shoots which I am interested in because I am considering taking some photos at live shows for my cover and/or my contents page.


Magazine Planning Presentation  
Magazine Planning Presentation  

This presentation contains all of my planning and pre-production work. It includes my flat plans, mood boards, flat plan planning stages, un...