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Vibe Magazine Analysis

Written By onci on Sunday, December 18, 2011 | 10:48 AM

  1. Vibe Analysis Sept October 2008 Ciara Edition Cover No.2
  2. Vibe Background and Target Audience Vibe is a music and entertainment magazine founded by producer Quincy Jones, launched in 1993. The publication predominantly features R&B and hip-hop music artists, actors and other entertainers. Production shut down in Summer 2009, however Vibe was purchased by the private equity InterMedia Partners. It is now issued quarterly with double covers, with a larger online presence, aided by the Vibe LifeStyle Network, a group of entertainment/music websites under the Vibe brand. The magazine's target demographic is predominantly young, urban followers of hip-hop culture between the ages of 18-34. Vibe’s circulation statistics show that in 2007 is was approximately 800,000. Vibe magazine’s distribution is largely through Vibe’s very own website however it can be found at selected stores. Refer to : www. vibe .com/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vibe_(magazine)
  3. Target Audience This cover of Vibe magazine uses of a rich and bold theme which emphasises Vibe’s serious approach to music. The lack of variation in colour and excessive use of image allows the cover lines and main image to speak for themselves, therefore the audience are drawn in and the attention is only on the music and artists only. Vibe sets the bar as being the location for those seeking information on “urban music, entertainment, culture and lifestyle for the aspirational 18-34 year old.” (taken from www.vibe.com ). The target audience are of a young yet maturing period in life where people learn who they are grow setting up their foundations for life. This audience are serious about music and wanting to be aware of both the music, its background and artists – this is successful and made accessible for the target audience as Vibe is a mature, in depth music magazine, the colour choice helps shows this as does the layout. The house style for this issue of Vibe consists of the colours grey, black, white and red. These are bold colours and arrangement has allowed each to stand out, giving it a rich effect. The target audience are attract as these colours are far from the bright and bubbly colours often found on magazines of a younger audience, therefore it is identifiable that Vibe is to be considered serious whilst remaining sleek. The contrast of the title Vibe also being incorporated into the issue (and so the colour is changed given each issue), we understand the Vibe incorporates everything into the product they deliver. And so the whole magazine from front cover to end is consistent with the issue’s ‘vibe’. The main image is a very seductive, however Ciara’s expression is playful and intriguing this makes the magazine appealing to both males and females, although there is a more masculine edge to this particular edition. The lack of props in this image and the plain white background allows the image to speak for itself. The use of Ciara being a singer in her twenties puts her in the prime position to be considered an icon/inspiration, if not already by the target audience of Vibe and so they can find her relatable. She is an R&B artist and again is very fitting for the genre of the magazine and the young urban audience as to which Vibe aims their magazine to, having someone as relevant allows the existing audience as well as potential readers to be aware of what Vibe has to offer. The Pull quote reads, “I’m not gonna hold back too much” this shows the familiarity between both the artists and target audience, to feel comfortable enough to reveal intimate details of her work and life show the strong relationship between artist and audience; this again shows the magazine’s intent to reach the target audience who seek to know their music and its composers inside out this increasing the respect. Although language with this isn’t immature and slangy, it remains informal but serious. Overall it would be considered colloquial and the magazine are able to approach their target audience in a way that reinforces the familiarity between the two.
  4. Front Cover Analysis The Masthead- this is the name of the magazine. This magazine is called ‘Vibe’ and sets the house style for the issue. This house styles colours are, Grey, White, Black and Red. The bottom of the lettering for the name ‘Vibe’ has a fading effect into the white background and creates and professional and interesting look merging the title and background into one. The denotation of this would be that Vibe the magazine and the subheadings of artists and music news are as one and in close relationship with one another. The Header – this presents additional information about the magazine. The use of this is to attract the audience as they not only have the main image/article but other features as to which they would want to read. Again this sticks to the house style, creating a professional look. ‘R&B goes soft. John Legend, Ne-Yo and Lloyd try to get it up’ , this immediately draws an interest as the audience will want to know to know how R&B has gone soft and what exactly are the three artists listed doing to change this. The Background – This is plain white. As it keeps to the house style it also puts the focus on the main image and cover lines as the contrast in colour make everything appear much bigger and bolder. This grabs the audiences attention. The connotation of using a white background is that the main image should speak for itself and without too many things to take in at one time the audience should immediately and efficiently see the main image as a great interest and what to read on. The Cover Lines – these are additional features to the magazine beside the main image and its article. Although these are not the focal part of the front cover they are just as important and are presented clear and bold enough gaining an interest. The variation is sizes of texts makes a contrast between each article being advertised and so some will stand out more than others however the variation will mean that the audience’s attention will be brought to the whole thing rather than lost as they all look the same. The Main Image – The main image is usually of the person(s) the magazine has a major article about and also what genre this edition of the magazine will be based around. This will be greatest selling point and creates the overall mood for that issue. The main image is of R&B singer Ciara, she nude wearing only heels and poses with a seductive expression. She appears to hold herself and with little light the audience are immediately drawn into see what exactly she is hiding. However this contrasts with the main cover line ‘Stand Up! Ciara’ and pull quote “I’m not gonna hold back too much”. This would suggest that in the article she reveals more than what she is on the front cover, ironically she is nude so the audience would automatically think ‘How can she reveal anymore’, again then the pull quote suggests she has more to reveal and be open about with the audience a contrast from her pose as she holds herself. BARCODE/DATE ISSUE/PRICE – This is conventional and is displayed on every magazine. Rule of Thirds – This allows the magazine to look professional and helps keep the images, and cover lines within a good distance of each other and presented well on the page. Use of Pul l Quote - this is a quote taken from the main article and along with the main cover line is an additional feature to attract the audience. “I’m not gonna hold back, too much” is a contradiction to the main image of Ciara where she is wearing nothing but heels. However there is an ultimate question as to what else can be revealed. Main Cover line - The main cover line often links with the main image and article attracting readers. “Stand up! Ciara”, this would connotates that she is to stand up and reveal herself having had a break from the music industry. It could also be perceived to be ironic as she poses crouched over nude, and to stand up would extremely revealing. The denotation of this it that the magazine have exclusive news from Ciara first hand and it is a must read.
  5. Contents Page Analysis The Masthead – An alternative to other contents pages as they usually copy a smaller version of the magazine masthead from the front cover, however Vibe has an outlined and enlarged ‘V’ from the original masthead. With ‘Contents’ written over it in bold characters the focus of the masthead is taken away, however it is there of a large size reminding readers it is Vibe they are reading. The Title Contents keeps to the house style. As a convential feature readers are made aware of the information to be found on this page and can navigate through the magazine easily. The layout of this with the word ‘Contents’ broken up into three lines adds an edge to the page and is consistent with the sleek style of Vibe magazine. Background – The background is continued from the front covered as the black/grey/white background merges into one. Again the use of little props or other images allows the central focus to be that of the image and contents list. The Main Image – is that of Ciara from the front cover however she is of a different pose and laying down in heels and a body suit. Revealing her legs this continues the initial mood that this issue will reveal information untold. The position of Ciara has her main body against the white/light grey section of the background this highlights her and put her at the attention of readers. Highlighting Ciara shows the readers the importance of her in this issue and so they are made attentive as she is clearly the main selling point of this issue. The body suit worn by Ciara is grey fitted with a nude belt, this sticks to the house theme and helps give a professional look. The consistency of house style and the magazine’s sleek mood flows from page to page. It is often an image or large writing of the editor is in place however Vibe doesn’t enforce this typical feature and so we get the feeling Vibe doesn’t stick to all the conventions of a magazine and that it truly is a magazine all about the artists/music and they speak for themselves. The Contents List – This is very basic and straight to the point with little use of subheadings the contents are separated into two categories. This makes the magazine easy to navigate around and avoids any complications when reading/understand the features found in the magazine. Again, this sticks to the house style and keeps an edgy and professional look. Avoiding too much colours keeps the contents looking mature and serious therefore readers will take this approach when reading the magazine too. The two subheadings are following by a small list of page numbers as to which each has a small caption of information about that specific article. This give the readers a summary of what can be found on that given page and so the use highlighted keywords helps highlight who, what and where, The key words highlighted in bold is a feature greatly used by magazine, this is because readers eyes will attracted to the bold text and so they will have an idea as to what and who the articles will be about and so readers looking for a specific information (eg. A band) this will avoid them having to read the whole text. The Layout – This is a very basic layout which uses the Rule of Third to keep text to the right third and the main image uses both the left and center third. This layout allows all the contents features to be clear and visible very much like the front cover.
  6. Double Page Spread Analysis The Main Image - This image of Ciara is one continued from the front cover, although Ciara isn’t in the same pose she is standing up. Revealing even more flesh as she hold her hand to her face. This reflects the main cover line titled, ‘Stand Up! Ciara’, this detonates to us that has stood up is putting herself in a vulnerable position as she poses nude. However the connotation is this is that she has stood up to speak and reveal to readers more than what most could guess or know from looking at her. Continuing an image from the front cover including props/costume – in this case nudity, allows the mood from the front cover to follow onto her article. Keeping the sophisticated edge keeps a professional look and so it would appear as she reveals more flesh on this double page spread she does too in the interview. The Background – Following the front cover Ciara’s double page spread only consists of light colours from the house style such as grey/white. This is due to this page being about Ciara and much like the front cover and contents page where Ciara is the background is light. However the greatest light is around the text as to which Ciara is interviewed and speaks to the magazine. The use of white connotates positivity, this links with Ciara as she speaks of her new music venture , her accomplishments and activities whilst on a break. Without the use of excessive colour or props this produces an intimate mood and that without anything in the way the readers will hear directly from Ciara and it’ll only be about Ciara. Anything else described/interpreted will be from her words alone. Use of Rule of Third– Vibe magazine makes great use of the rule of third and so on the first page, there is text filling the left and right third whilst the long length main image of Ciara takes up the center third. This continues on the second of the double page spread, with text taking up all thirds and another image of Ciara taking up the center and right third towards the top of the page. This enables a professional look and the text doesn’t appear squashed in any way. With the text using the rule of third this avoids a busy look, consistent with both the front cover and contents page this looks simplistic yet stylish. An easy read and clear distinction between sections of text and images. The Layout and Text – The layout is very spaced out and avoids a busy look. Continuing from the front cover and contents page, this double page spread is very simplistic and each text and image is identifiable. Sub-headings and bold text helps highlight key information from each section and so it is easily identified as to what information can be found in each section. The house style remains the same, although is does include an addition of yellow bold text. This adds abit of fun and energy to the text, along side a second image of Ciara in a playful mannerism wearing just a shirt the audience get a fun vibe and light vibe. This reflects her personality and her mood as she reveals to vibe her new music ventures. Second Image – This image of Ciara differs from the main image as she is wearing a white shirt and has a playful mannerism which proves much more energetic and displays her personality. We would assume that being interviewed by Vibe she has taken down her guard, having posed nude for the magazine it would appear there is familiarity and comfort with Vibe and so she can express herself fully. Wearing a white shirt in image she conforms to house style keeping a professional look from page to page. This image allows us to see Ciara beyond her work and this what readers want to see.
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