As part of Cass Art's partnership with Stack Magazines to offer our online customers an exclusive 10% subscription discount, we celebrate the magnificent art direction of some of the best publications in Stack's collection. With Steve Watson, founder of Stack and all round magazine guru, we count down the top five covers from Stack's selection as voted by Instagram likes...
5 - Postr
This is no ordinary magazine, folding out to an A1 size Postr does what it says on the tin, doubling as an edgy zine and a giant poster.
How does Postr function as a magazine? Why do you think people love it so much?
Postr invades public spaces in its native Belgium and beyond, bringing its own brand of angry protest to the streets. I think people like seeing something that’s not really supposed to be there - we’ll find out more on 24th March when Postr appears at Printout, our bimonthly night of independent publishing at The Book Club in Shoreditch.
4 - No Brainer
Beautifully crafted zine No Brainer explores music from locations across the country.
What is your favourite part of No Brainer? Who would you recommend this magazine to?
I love the simplicity of what No Brainer does, taking great music writing and matching it with lovely illustrations in a simple stapled zine. There are no frills here, but something as simple as putting your masthead on a white sticker is a clever way of elevating the overall look and feel. Pick it up if you want something a bit more distinctive and handmade than the likes of NME.
3 - Suitcase
For photography, travel and fashion look no further than Suitcase, doesn't the cover say it all?
What makes Suitcase different to other lifestyle magazines? What's your favourite part about this cover?
There are lots of independent travel magazines around at the moment, but Suitcase uses fashion as its point of difference. This cover is fantastically confrontational - meet her gaze and you just have to find out what’s inside.
2 - Fin
A publication for everyone, featuring inspirational people with interesting stories and passions.
What sort of articles does Fin feature? How will I feel after reading it?
It runs a series of interviews with Norwegian artists around the world. It’s funded by Arts Counsil Norway and it’s unashamedly promotional, but it manages to influence the reader without shouting too loudly, so I think you’ll feel informed and quietly amused (there’s a great feature in which the Norwegians collectively raise their eyebrows at Icelandic people and their belief in trolls, elves and other fantastical creatures).
1 - Cereal
Magazine renowned for championing food and travel in the most stylish way ever.
Why do you think Cereal has clinched the #1 spot? Who would enjoy this magazine?
Cereal has done an amazing job of creating a minimalist aesthetic and building a community around it. This cover shows a photo of Paris but you’d never know that without reading the story inside - they’re not interested in telling you the same old stuff about the same old cities, and I think that’s why people love it so much.
(note - they’ve just dropped the food focus of the magazine, so it’s now all about travel. Well, almost - there is one story in this issue on honey)
Can you tell us a little bit about your personal favourites?
I love opening my post every morning and finding covers like this waiting for my attention. I think my favourite covers are the ones that do something unexpected - the ones that don’t just catch your eye, but make you wonder what’s going on there. For example Rooms (also on the Stack Instagram) put out an incredible cover recently, with a model’s face painted white and camouflaged against the background with strange, quasi-tribal black symbols. When you see something like that you know you’re going to take a look inside.
Should you or shouldn't you judge a book by its cover?
Of course you should - that’s what it’s there for! The cover is the most important page of any magazine, and if the editors and art directors haven’t sweated over it they haven’t done their job properly.
Cass Art stocks all the equipment you need to get up and running with your own publication! From papers to pens, stencils and scalpels, all you need to provide is the eye for design and wonderful content!
Shop online now to receive your ticket offer booklet including discount off a Stack Magazines subscription which is being included with online purchases until the end of March.
For tickets to the bimonthly night of independent publishing 'Printout' at The Book Club in Shoreditch, click here.