Hanging Around A Newsstand : A Window on Culture

photo by Eric E. Johnson

photo by Eric E. Johnson

I remember walking to work in Manhattan and glancing at a Newsstand’s cascading color pallet of magazine covers.  Pure eye candy; a bespoken world of words and pictures with all  those visual images screaming at you.

Hey! Choose Me; Choose Me!

Every masthead meticulously quaffed and designed to capture: size, shape and color to perfection.

The result?  Being able to assimilate pop culture in about three seconds … a Blink.

Cosmopolitan was an early adopter, thanks to Scavullo and Helen Gurley Brown, who together redefine women and fashion in the ‘70s. It established itself as a brand for women: attainable, albeit dramatized: the Cosmo Girl. ? Its counter was MS magazine fueled by Gloria Steinem.  Other influence came from Conte Nast which made a science of melding titles with branded content. Clay Felker did the same with New York Magazine. Time made it an art; National Geographic made it an industry. Life magazine made it our window to the world. It was literally larger than life and proved it. Then, Vanity Fair and Anne Leibovitz’s glorious gate-fold front covers made a clarion call to pop culture and Vogue made its indelible brand mark necessitating advertisers to participate within its pages or perish.

Women's Magazines on News Stand

So, what happens now after a century of published Brand building and recognition?

Reinvention is calling. Every corporate identity designer, editor and photo-journalist is reimagining their art form.

Today, iPad is the publisher and the iconic branded mast heads of the past are now chapter headings.

That of course is all going to change. What fun it will be to see how it manifests itself and which brands retain their resonance and relevance.

Click here to read more: http://www.apple.com/ipad/ready-for-ipad/

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