MAGFEST 2015

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Print isn’t dead, it just smells funny
— Francesco Franchi

This was a quote that caught the attention of many of us in the room at Magfest last Friday, humorous, inspiring and true are the three words I would describe my day. Listening to speakers all passionate and experienced in the world of magazine and design, it was a privilege to be in their company, courtesy of my team at white light media that I must thank.

For those of you who don't know, Magfest is an all day event to celebrate the world of print, with talks, panel sessions, exhibitions and a chance for us as designers to meet people in the industry. To share and gain knowledge. Become inspired by what others have to say and stay motivated to keep producing print magazines. 

Hands down the most inspiring and motivating talk of the whole day was first up Phil Thomas, with Creativity Matters. Two minutes into it and I was sitting with goosebumps and a lump in my throat with his exceptional intro showing just how powerful us as creatives can be. The fact of the matter is that everyone wants to be creative just some of us manage it and others don't. Look at Volvos ad for trucks, feat Van Damme's epic split scene, they took one of the most boring objects to try and sell and produced an ad that the internet went crazy for. 

If you are not in a safe place to take risks, then your
ideas become small and predictable
— Phil Thomas

Creativity is infectious just like winning, something that can be seen at Cannes Lions festival. Here, people come to see the best ideas and the minds behind them, they come to see the bravery that changes the course of communication. What it really comes down to is three key things; product, culture and disruption. Giving the people an attachment, understanding their personal needs, giving them something to emotionally relate to and disrupting what we consider to be the norm.

Creativity shone right through to Francesco Franchi's talk in the afternoon, where he talked us through the development of IL magazine and its transformation from a lifestyle magazine into a news magazine. The combination and use of intricate infographics, illustration and occasional product placement is beautifully represented. Simple colour themes, different in each issue running continuously throughout. As well as each section within designed in a different way, makes for a perfect magazine. Francesco makes a valid point that now newspapers are dieing we can focus on quality, something he certainly does in IL, so much so, that I've subscribed to the print version, solely for the design ... baring in mind that it is all in Italian. 

Here you can see a flickr set of some of the spreads as well as the grids.

April Issue 14'

April Issue 14'

October Issue 14'

October Issue 14'

But why make a magazine?
— Andrew Diprose

This was a question that was asked by Andrew Diprose, creative director of Wired magazine and publisher of his own mag, The Ride Journal. Having been in the print industry for the same amount of years that I've been alive (21), I figured he would have a few interesting things to say. He began by answering his question with a valid, simple reason that I had never actually thought about, magazines bring the audience together with their passion. They take people places, so that when your not doing your passion, your reading about it. This is exactly what he wanted to achieve with The Ride Journal, giving back to the cycling community, so much so that he doesn't actually gain any profit from it, all profit goes to charity. 

But why not digital, you may ask? Digital has it's limitations when it comes to user experience, it's there for on the go reading, therefore a lot of design has to be stripped back to allow an easy read. Resulting in a simplified version of the print copy with a sole reason to be read. It doesn't take you places like print does and nothing beats the feeling of receiving your subscription in the post and having something to own and cherish. So with all that being said, lets just let print do what it does best and let digital do what that does best.

The Ride Journal Issue 7

The Ride Journal Issue 7

No matter what type of magazine lover you are, whether you're a reader, writer, collector or design freak, magfest is a must. The date for your diary is 23rd September 2016, more info at www.magfest.co.uk