Happy April everyone! I know I've been really absent and inconsistent with my posts, and I'm really upsetting myself because I am dedicated to Eloise and have a giant list of post ideas, I'm just lacking the free time. Even spring break was just way too busy. So I've set a schedule for myself with "post days," and I plan to follow them! Loads of covers to go through, so let's dig in!
1. VOGUEVogue US: I really love the theme of "The Little Mermaid" being used for this cover. Everyone knows of and has seen Rihanna's new(ish) bright red hair, so the mermaid theme was a creative and playful way to interpret the pop star's look! The see-thru, printed dress looks just like scales. It just looks like she is rising from the sea, perched on a rock instead of glass paneling.
Vogue UK: Kate Winslet looks almost unrecognizable, doesn't she? But not in a bad way! She has joined the pixie cut bandwagon, and her hand placements and angled head makes the cover asymmetrical, original and edgy. I love Kate Winslet, she is so beautiful and this cover photo looks amazing: her skin is flawless and so radiant! Vogue UK plays with font and text a lot more than US, and I admit, love them for it!
WINNER: Though I love Kate Winslet, I just think the modern "Little Mermaid" look of Vogue US is so original and too beautiful to pass up! However, I must say both girls don't look too comfortable in their poses.. I can see Kate's neck tense and a little strained, making me feel tense in return.
Cosmopolitan US: Just in time for warm weather, here is Olivia Wilde looking pretty, beachy & sultry on the US cover. The lighting and color quality makes her so radiant, natural and seriously gorgeous! I've seen this cover many times as I've walked through the supermarket, and I always want to keep looking and flip through the magazine! Which is definitely the point of a good cover.
Cosmopolitan UK: I've read a couple articles about this cover-- about Beyonce's strange pose and why exactly this photo was picked for the cover. It's so awkward with the arm placement on the hip and the other wrapped around her waist. Not to mention this was the only cover where I couldn't find a completely clear and good quality photo. Then the skin-colored font is so odd, and the "Win 1 million pounds CASH" plug with the tagline: "You could make your dreams come true" leaves a bad taste in my mouth. (The "e" in sex is randomly pink too.)
WINNER: Cosmo US, obviously. Though both magazines cover the same topics (sex, beauty, fashion... more sex) Cosmo US still looks classy, modern and mature. The UK magazine is looking a little tweeny.
GQ US: This photo looks like Derek Jeter's high school baseball team photo, the kind you can get wallet sizes of and hand out to relatives. Holding a baseball bat for a cover photo? If people don't know he is a baseball player from just his picture and printed name, he isn't famous enough to be on the cover of a magazine. At least do something creative with the bat instead of holding it up. Maybe this is just me. I apologize for the rant!
GQ UK: Every cover British GQ has done since I started this blog has been of women! Half-naked women! Just so everyone knows... Anyways, I love Daisy Lowe. She looks sexy and has a very interesting look for the cover. Wrapped in some kind of cord... her hair frizzy and tousled. The cover is a little top heavy with the text all up there, but I suppose it could balanced with her chest. I suppose it depends on the audience and where they are looking...
WINNER: GQ UK. I'm so bothered by the cover photo of the US one, I can't select it. And the UK cover has a theme, has personality. Though I can't say I really love either one.
Glamour US: Kate Winslet again, looking bright, glossy and... actually glamourous, fitting well with the magazine! I like how the plug "Your Ultimate Sexy Hair Guide" is right next the Kate's shiny, amazing-looking hair. I think Glamour is one magazine that organizes the text of it's covers extremely well. It's clean, fresh, diverse and fun!
Glamour UK: Pink! Very pink. The jazzy, gigantic 10 is very interesting. It really isn't a bad cover though, I really like her asian-inspired outfit, it's very original for a cover shoot. There is just way too much pink. And I wish they would get rid of "Britain's No 1 Women's Magazine." For some reason it just annoys me and takes away from the classiness of a magazine design.
WINNER: Glamour US. I know it's Glamour UK's tenth birthday, but Kate's look and the text design just inches me towards picking one over the other.
InStyle US: What a photoshop nightmare! Poor Tina Fey, I don't know why they would need to photoshop her so much, but unless the need was DIRE, I don't think it was necessary. Was that white bar inserted? I can't tell from the photo. This article (there are many about this cover online!) notices a chunk of her midsection is cut out and her laugh lines, scar, (or any wrinkles at all) were scrubbed out.
InStyle UK: Does Gwyneth look a little greasy to you? She also doesn't look particularly happy, she's just kind of there. The text on the left side is also all very similar in size, not leaving much depth. Though it helps the font is all different at least.
WINNER: InStyle UK. Obvious photoshop is unforgivable, this being no exception. Once again, both aren't impressive, but Gwyneth's cover is the lesser of two... not great covers.
Elle US: Though it may seem like the photo is a little fuzzy, Amanda Seyfried is actually intentionally softened for the cover, which contrasts most magazines who opt for pristine definition. She looks sultry and seems to have a natural glow. The cover is a little heavy with text... there is a lot to read here! However, it helps that the sizes are varied yet kept on the smaller side, which I think does wonders for a cover. No need to block the cover stars.
Elle UK: Heavy contrast and electrifying colors. UK covers align their text to the center a lot more than US covers, and I enjoy that nice change. On this cover Gwen's arm is a little awkwardly placed, it's kind of cutting her body in half. Really, one of the first things I see is just ARM. Also, the text is all serif, and personally I like the variety of serif and sans serif, unless for some reason all-serif serves a specific purpose or just looks fantastic.
WINNER: These are both really nice covers, and my sister and I actually had a long discussion over the pros and cons of each to decide. It's nice when it's a little challenging to pick one. However, I'll have to go with Elle US. To me it's cleaner and has a greater first-look impact.
Esquire US: I love Esquire. I'm not sure how many times I've previously said this, but this magazine, US and UK, is perhaps my favorite magazine ever. Ok, to business. I love how the setting of the photo shoot (a desert of some kind) is incorporated into the cover with the ground and empty bush. It looks like they just set up a white sheet on location and had Matthew pose there. (You can see the sheet crumple up a little as it hits the ground). Clever. Previously, I said I wasn't crazy about the redesign, but I can now see it has a positive side! The giant font, bold contrasts and sections are typical of Esquire, but now it's just cleaner.
Esquire UK: This month is Esquire UK's 20th birthday! This is the subscriber's edition cover I believe, and trust me, it literally took a lifetime to find this photo. I don't know why. I love the sans serif and silver, making it look modern and futuristic, yet the lines and graphic gives it a vintage feel. Esquire is good at bordering the line between modernity and vintage with finesse. This design is lovely and clean, and the "20" is bold and..... cool-looking.. (to use an intelligent designer's term.) Plus the zero is actually the male symbol, and the arrow has text in it. Cool.
WINNER: Hardest decision of my life. No, but I'm picking Esquire UK. It's just special, and doing a purely graphic design for a cover only happens once in a while, maybe once a year. So when you do it, it's really a success or a failure. And I think this one was a success.
8. HARPER'S BAZAAR
Harper's Bazaar US: Why God, why? Why do these covers keep happening? Did they even have a cover shoot? Or did they just pick an old red carpet picture and crop her face in, then stick GIGANTIC text all over her hair, forehead and chest? However, I like her make-up. (Since I can see it so clearly.)
Harper's Bazaar UK: Wonderfully beautiful and artistic photograph. Their covers always look so couture and high fashion. They don't feel the need to plaster their cover with text-- just a title and the celebrity's name. I respect that.
WINNER: Harper's Bazaar UK. No need to even think about it.
9. MARIE CLAIRE
Marie Claire US: A really cute idea. They look adorable together, and I love that they are both essentially wearing the same thing. The color palette is also really great, soft and actually calming to me. I feel calm looking at it. I only wish the cutely written "Fashion extravaganza" actually said "The Couples Issue" or something. Only because I was wondering why there are two people on the cover... plus I once heard covers with two or more people are a lot harder to sell, so it being the couples issue justifies it for me.
Marie Claire UK: If you check out last month's Marie Claire you can compare the text placement between the two and see that it is pretty much exactly the same, besides what the words actually say. It's really important to mix it up, move words around, change the sizes, etc. And, although the photo is good, I keep wanting to just pick up Amanda's cutout and just move her down so the crown of her head isn't cut off!
WINNER: Marie Claire US. Lovely.
I have literally been sitting here for hours and just churned that out. I'm proud of myself.
Let's round it up!
Close one! I have to say though, some covers this April really weren't very good. When they were bad, they were BAD. (Both InStyles, Cosmpolitan UK, Harper's Bazaar US) Hopefully next month is more challenging!
My personal favorite this month:
Just warm, sultry and summery with natural beauty and textures. Love it!
PLEASE tell me, which is your favorite this month? x