PEP 160 Report

Victoria Sewart Contemporary Jewellery Gallery for Crafts, The Magazine for Contemporary Craft

When I first began brainstorming ideas for this assignment I knew I wanted at least one of my features to be for an art magazine, as they are the kind of editorial spaces I engage with as a reader myself. I had already arranged to go and photograph a unique jewellery business in Plymouth so decided to find a relevant editorial space for a feature on the Victoria Sewart Contemporary Jewellery Gallery.

In search of relevant publications I went into WHSmith and the University libraries and came across Crafts, The Magazine for Contemporary Craft. I felt that this would be the most appropriate space for the article I wanted to produce about Sewart’s business and her career. As this magazine is for professionals in this industry and rather than being a kind of advert for this business I wanted to produce a feature on Sewart herself as she is an established designer, curator and business woman who is really inspiring. As she has been a designer for over twenty years and during the first few years of running the gallery she was diagnosed with cancer and still came into work during her treatment. 

Screenshots from Crafts, The Magazine for Contemporary crafts' Media Pack
I learnt about Crafts’ audience by downloading their media pack where I learnt that over half of the circulation of the magazine is obtained through subscriptions. Which tells me that they have a very loyal readership which appears to be made up of mainly professionals in the creative industries. When looking at the magazine itself I found that many of the articles are about professionals in the industry including creators and business owners. They also use photographs in these features in very similar ways, often with a full page environmental portrait and then photographs of pieces of design and interior/exterior photographs of businesses and studios. 

Before going to my shoot I prepared a number of questions for Sewart to help me write my article and I also planned out the photographs I wanted to take, which I felt helped me conduct the shoot and work with my subject. As she was able to gain an understanding of what I wanted. 
Examples of feature layouts from various issues of Crafts Magazine
I decided that my content would best fit into the ‘best of British’ section of the magazine and began designing my content in a similar way to other feature articles on businesses that I had looked at. I felt that in order to go with the article I had to use photographs from my shoot that encompass the entire business. So I used a full length environmental portrait of Victoria, two product shots, a detail shot of Sewart working in the studio and an exterior shot of the business. Overall I feel I have suitably produced client specific content and that my layout is also appropriate for the publication.

Summer Baking Inspiration for Delicious Magazine

I was certain early on that I wanted to do at least one feature for a food magazine as I really wanted to try some food photography. After purchasing food magazines such as Olive, Jamie and BBC Good Food I decided I wanted to produce my content for Delicious. As I like how they design their content and use photography in a big way to inspire their more sophisticated and contemporary consumers to try new recipes. 

Media Information found on the Intermediate Media website
As I was producing this content in early spring I decided to produce something for a summer issue as they have a section called seasonal inspiration that I wanted my article to be designed for. I decided as I would be cooking the recipes myself to create an article on baking recipes. As these kinds of foods will remain how I want them to look for a lot longer, which I would need as I would be styling the food and photographing it by myself. 

My process for finding recipes was very long and involved me looking in books and online for recipes with summer fruits and also more fun ones which led me to the oreo brownie recipe. 

Examples of layouts from various issues of Delicious magazine

Some of the content I needed to edit
To design my article I looked at how Delicious uses typography and the formats they use for writing their recipes. The most difficult part for me was the picture editing because I photographed a lot more recipes then I was going to feature. However I decided on the brownies for the first two pages because Delicious often have a cover recipe in feature which they will include more than one picture of. 

Haunted Cornwall for My Cornwall

The most difficult editorial choice was for my SDA work as my project ended up being about hauntings in Cornwall and I really didn’t want it to go anywhere near a paranormal enthusiast publication. After discussing the project in a workshop I realised that it would work nicely in a publication about Cornish culture as this is something people in Cornwall could be really interested in. I decided to go for My Cornwall in the end as through reading the media pack I found that the magazine is read by people in their mid thirties and above who want to learn more about their culture and also people who holiday here and want to find new places to explore. 

Screenshots from the My Cornwall media pack

Examples of My Cornwall layouts
I decided to design my article to go in the ‘out and about’ section of the magazine, as I wanted it to be about introducing people to these stories about places you can visit in Cornwall. They also have ran an article about forgotten Cornish Saints in this section which I felt would be of a similar style to my article in terms of telling stories in connection to places. 

Another difficulty was designing my content as there isn’t a great deal of consistency in how they use text and arrange photographs on their pages. However they usually have a double page photograph to begin with which is why I used this photograph of Porthminster beach across two pages. Overall I am not massively pleased with my design however I do feel that this content has been made appropriate for this editorial space and is something they would consider publishing. My SDA was obviously not created for a specific publication and doing this has really shown me the importance of having the curation of your work in mind before you create it. 

Rue for Oh Comely

I decided that Oh Comely would be my final editorial space as it is one of my personal favourites. The magazine has an audience of 18 - 35 year old creatives and content is often created by these readers. The space is all about meeting strangers so for my article I wanted to find an inspiring subject that their audience would want read about. Fortunately I was able to contact 23 year old Rue; a Cornish Jazz singer who is about to release her first EP. 

Screenshots from the Oh Comely media pack
As articles are generally made up of portrait photographs that fit with the magazine’s aesthetic we arranged a portrait session in Falmouth as she had a gig there in February. Before the shoot we sat down for coffee so that I could interview her for my article and then I explained the kinds of portraits I wanted to take. Because my article is about her being a Cornish singer/songwriter who uses the internet to reach an audience, I felt it was important to take my portraits of her by the beach. As beautiful beaches is what many of us associate with Cornwall which is a big part of her identity. 

For me the photographs are about introducing an audience to this person and I chose these two images for the magazine because I felt they were the two strongest, and I like the consistency in colours that go with the text and also the horizon lines which are in the same places in the photographs. 

Writing the article wasn’t too challenging as the interview really shaped the subject matter that I had intended for the piece, and in the end it was the naming the title that I struggled with most. Eventually I came up with A New Note which I think summarises Rue’s circumstances and also links with her being a musician. 

Screenshots of my email correspondence with Lara Watson 
I think that my pitching email was concise but informative enough for the editor to decide whether this is something she would be interested in or not. The reply I have had is that she has forwarded it onto the new editor which I was hoping she would do as she has said on social media that she has left the magazine however Oh Comely are yet to update their online presence with the contact details of their new editor. I decided to pitch this content because I feel it is my strongest it terms of its attractiveness to my chosen editorial space and I also felt I could provide them with the most information about my subject matter as I can easily put them in contact with Rue. 

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