Codes and Conventions of Magazine Front Cover

elle mag cover cropped

The image of the celebrity is positioned in the middle of the magazine with a long mid shot, capturing most of her body. The place of the main and only image makes it the centre of attention for the reader and a plus for any fans of Nicki Minaj. The choice of celebrity is important because this attracts the audience for the magazine.

This particular magazine’s theme is kept simple, just like the celebrity’s make up. However, it is still attracting the reader with the choice of clothing used. The name of the celebrity in the image and “UNZIPPED” showing us the link between the image and cover line and the reason why the jacket the celebrity is wearing is unzipped. This also attracts attention of readers who read magazines unlike ELLE because it has a different content. For example, some readers may describe the image as ‘sexy’ which is not suitable for every audience. The dark clothing connotes a darker side to the celebrity opposing to the simple, pure make up. This suggests that the magazine looks simple from the front cover yet effective with the content it presents to the reader. The audience also understand this from the celebrity’s facial expression and how her position is structured. There is direct mode of address from the celebrity, locking in the reader to the magazine.

The date of the release and website of the magazine is in small font because the reader is more interested in the other text on the magazine such as the cover lines and what the magazine includes and has to offer. However, the date is still there as part as the main information of the magazine.

The masthead stands out on a dark colour background, and matches the cover lines colour and font. However, the masthead is in a much larger font to be the first piece of text the reader notices. The colours are used in contrast to each other so it draws the attention of the reader and is easy to read. The yellow colour font connotes as the magazine being exciting and positive as oppose to the grey background suggesting formality.

All font throughout the magazine front cover is in an upper-case font which connotes as the magazine being formal and getting the point across to the reader. The masthead is in serif matching the rest of the yellow text on the front cover.

The layout of this magazine is tidy and leaves the image clear to draw attention. Compared to a magazine such as Heat, ELLE has a straightforward layout and design, along with the theme and content. The masthead also suggests to the audience that the magazine is elegant because of the way you would pronounce it as well as the whole layout of the magazine. The mode of address seems indirect as it is speaking to everyone not just the reader, this way the reader feels part of the group who reads this magazine, also more social. The language of the magazine is also formal as there is no colloquial language, showing sophistication. The target audience is for young female adults up to middle age females because the content is more suitable to them. For example, some content includes make up, fashion and getting promoted aimed at females who can be employable. The cover lines attract females who want to improve their selves by gaining advice and information from the magazine such as; “FLAWLESS SKIN” etc.

“OUR BEST BEAUTY GUIDE EVER!” is persuading the reader that they must buy this and not miss out on the magazines offer. “OUR” although in a smaller font, emphasises that the “beauty guide” is theirs and theirs only, so the reader will not be able to find this opportunity elsewhere. The content of the magazine is made clear, as mentioned in the cover lines “FASHION” and “BEAUTY” in large serif font, decorating the text as the female reader would their selves because that is what the magazine advises them upon.


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