Designing an impactful magazine cover is important to make the copy stands out. Imagine trying to compete for attention next to other magazines out there! While magazine cover has specific elements such as masthead (main title), cover image, and issue date, you can apply design tricks to create a stronger impact.
Here are several tricks to make your magazine covers memorable.
Use Proper Masthead Font
The main title of your magazine must instantly attract attention. Generally, sans fonts with medium to thick strokes and large x-heights (standard height between the baseline and the topline in lowercase letters) are preferable. They have good readability even when printed in smaller sizes.
You must also consider the contrast between the font colors and the cover background. Some magazines opt for different font colors depending on the cover. Others place the masthead in a contrasting background shape, keeping the same font colors every time.
Combine Several Fonts
Make your magazine cover more interesting by combining different fonts. Use them to highlight featured articles or emphasize the most interesting titles. The font variations can be the styles, sizes, or colors. However, make sure they do not clutter the cover and still look balanced.
Create Color Schemes
Images for magazine covers should have strong color schemes to attract attention. You can create a monochromatic look, combining elements such as the model’s outfits, props, backgrounds, and font colors to create a bold color scheme that stands out. Alternatively, use thematic color schemes such as autumnal shades, flowers, rainbow, or colored metal.
Regardless of the color schemes, always make sure that all the fonts will be visible on their background. This should always be a consideration when choosing an image for the cover.
Emphasize Strong Words or Phrases
Magazines usually have main features and topics that receive more attention. Make sure to emphasize thematic words that promise the readers what they will get. You can also highlight powerful, strong, attractive words such as “new”, “hottest”, “exclusive”, “wonder”, and such. You can also use the names of celebrities as a focus depending on the featured articles.
There are many ways you can highlight these words. Give them different font colors, enlarge their font sizes, or put them in shapes like circles.
Keep the Cover Template Consistent
Despite everything, you do to make the cover more interesting, remember to keep the template consistent! It gives the magazine an air of reliability, and people will notice them easily among the sea of other magazines. A consistent template also makes it easier for designers because they can design based on predictable layouts.
Highlight the Best Elements of the Cover Image
Depending on the magazine theme, the cover image must have interesting elements to highlight. A cover designer must work together with others like photographers and makeup artists to get this highlight. Here are some examples of image highlights on magazine covers:
Model’s Best Features
Ideally, a close-up image of a cover model should “address” the readers. Choose an image where the model has eye contact since it looks more engaging. Alternatively, use the image of a model in an interesting pose or bold makeup. You can also use design elements from the specific themes of the cover photos or models, such as for holiday editions.
Magazine covers may feature people, nature, animals, buildings, or interior designs. Regardless of the objects, all cover images should feature beautiful compositions. Make sure the image highlights the best of the main features and enhance them with design software to make them stand out among the other magazines.
Go with Illustrations
Drawings, both traditional and digital, can achieve unique effects that traditional photographs cannot replicate. You can go bold by using illustrations for the cover. They can be anything, from 3D images to cartoon-style portraits. You can even use mixed media and combine photographs with illustrations, for example. You can also use design tools like Photoshop to create unique thematic photos.
Design around Focal Point
Designing around a focal point is a way to make your cover image balanced. It can be the face of the model or the most distinguished objects in the photo composition. It is the simplest way to create a distinguished design and attract the attention of people who will see the cover.
Creating magazine covers requires creativity and the ability to attract people’s attention while staying in cover design rules. Use these tips and create magazines that will instantly invite people to read them.