Friday, 7 February 2014

JOANNA BEHAR: FROM VOGUE TO VAGUE - LAYOUT DESIGN ARTICLE


I found this article whilst carrying out further secondary research into the layout design of Vogue. New York based graphic designer, wrote an article on her blog of a comparison between two different editions of the cover, and of the first 2 pages of the magazine (contents, and first double page spread) analysing the typefaces used, colour scheme, photography and art direction, and how in some ways Vogue are 'copying' Elle's and Vanity Fair's layouts. 


I found the minimal differences quite interesting, and whilst carrying out research on cover and layout have noticed the same thing for international editions, especially those such as Australia and the US.

From this I would like to carry out primary research into the international editions I personally own, to try and analyse differences/similarities in layout across different countries. 

From Vogue to Vague

By Joanna Behar
So I finally have a bit of time for myself and decided to take a little trip to the south of France for three days. But, of course, my obsession for the editorial world is not at rest and I had a few hours at the airport to catch up on what I’ve missed commenting on these past few months. Let’s start with a recent cover, I’m looking at you Vogue U.S, I’m pretty sure you don’t want me to be looking at you right now…. For their July cover they have singer Katy Perry. But wait…this looks familiar…


Yes they did. This cover looks like an almost exact copy of their December 2012 issue with Anne Hathaway. Come on, I know it’s summer and that this is a small issue but recycling a December style for July is really not the way to go… The color scheme is the same, green, pretty red flowers, that weird sad empty gaze is still here and honestly it wasn’t a winning cover in December and it’s not one now. However, this cover is the least of Vogue’s problem right now.

I’m not even going to mention the layout and graphic design from the spreads inside the issue…Ok well that’s a total lie… I have to mention that. When I flipped through the magazine and saw…whatever the heck it was that I saw I’m still not sure, I had to look at the cover twice to check I was indeed looking at Vogue U.S, what does that say?

I do not understand how the whole artistic direction of this publication can be so wrong. If you swapped the current cover with the ELLE logo no one would notice the difference…(that is an insult to ELLE actually, their layouts are divine compared to this) I’m not talking about the pictures as there are some good series in there but Oh My God the typography?? It looks like a failed merger between 4 or 5 different magazines! (no Vogue…that’s not a good thing when you look like you’re stealing layouts and fonts from everyone else…). Maybe the art director is on vacation who knows, it doesn’t make that much of a difference. I have, many times, lashed out at Vogue U.S because this publication which is supposed to be so elegant, fashion oriented and forward is simply a mess. They don’t even have a signature typeface (or one particular typeface that stands out more than the other for that matter, it looks like they are just using whatever they are in the mood for when they make a layout..). I isolated a few spreads to compare and contrast them with layouts from other publications like Vanity Fair and ELLE in case my point isn’t already made, check them out below:




 All I can add to conclude this post is this: What it particularly sad is that Vogue U.S is no longer a publication I can respect. All that remains of this magazine’s former glory is it’s name…and clearly that load is too heavy to carry.

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