Magazine Pages

This exercise involved choosing a magazine and working out the grid or grids that have been used. I chose a two page feature from the BBC History magazine.

The magazine pages are 215mm wide and 285mm high. There is a 25mm margin at the top of the page a 13mm margin at the bottom. The margin against the spine is 13mm and the margin on the outer edge is 16mm. The grid for the page has two columns which are both 90mm wide. There is a 6mm gutter between the columns. The grid is the same for every page of the article but the magazine uses different grids for different articles. The heading text is a serif font similar to Adelle PE regular and the body text is a sans serif font similar to Avenir Book. The images are the full width of the columns and are all identical in dimension. There is not a great deal of white space used around the majority of the article but the title is centred and surrounded in white space.

I reproduced the grid and the article in InDesign.

I chose the title ‘A Winter Get-Away’ and experimented with developing the grid into a variety of different articles.

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The choice and size of images has a significant effect on the tone of the articles and on the appeal to different types of audiences. I found that the skiing action shots needed to be bigger and fill more of the grid in order to have the most impact and as a result the article became less about the text and more about the images. In a similar way, the images for a visit to Father Christmas at Lapland are dominant to the text. Both sets of images defines the readership to be more family/child orientated and geared towards trying to advertise a holiday rather than individual travellers or simply an informative piece. The more traditional serif typefaces and single background image used in the first example is more suggestive of a narrative style article or possibly a story whereas the example with multiple images and a sans serif body text feels much more like a descriptive travel article.

I think that the articles with more text and either just one, or a series of smaller images seems to work best visually with a grid of this type. Two columns of text creates better balance overall and gives a more sophisticated look to the articles. The example with the skiing pictures looks rather amateurish I feel.

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