Paradox Magazine is a pop-rock magazine aimed at listeners aged 16 – 29, for both men and women. From audience profile research I completed for my magazine I discovered that these listeners are generally people who like to stand out from the crowd and be creative and unique. My research also suggests that my audience members are likely to be passionate about music and are interested in a wide range of subjects, but mainly music oriented.

The Blumler and Katz’ Uses and Gratifications Model suggests that media is consumed by audience members based on four key areas: personal identity; entertainment; social interaction; and information. Because of this I will try to choose adverts which I know will appeal to these aspects for my target audience.

ADVERT 1 – airpods

Due to the fact that my target audience consists of people who have a passion and interest in music, I thought that Airpods would be a good advert to include in my magazine. Apple is a popular brand, and Airpods are highly desired by many people, and very relevant to a music magazine as they are  wireless Bluetooth earphones. This ad fits in well with my colour palette and design as it is fairly minimalist and clearly relevant to the magazine. If my audience sees this ad when reading the magazine, they might also have a higher chance of buying the product. Airpods can be used by anyone, which enables this advert to appeal to my whole target audience.


As my target audience is a fairly young demographic, but still a fairly wide age range, I wanted to include an ad which would appeal to everyone, especially those who may not be able to afford Airpods. This means that this Coca Cola ad is able to appeal to everyone as well as being an ad which encourages the audience to go out and socialise, as Coca Cola is a drink everyone can have. This block colour and fairly minimalist design also fits with the bold colours I have used throughout my magazine.

A New Improved Complete Magazine Draft

Flipsnack of My Magazine


Overall I am happy with the magazine which I have produced as I think it is very unique and original and very relevant to my pop-rock genre, and I think it will appeal to my target audience well because of this.

Front Cover: For my front cover, I decided on a colour palette / theme of black, silver, white and cyan/pastel blues. I used the black and the white to highlight anything really important, for example my featured artist’s name, and the pugs, as well as to catch the audience’s attention. I also tried to use the blue as much as possible to bring out Alabama’s eyes. I used Alabama’s costume as inspiration for the colour scheme as |I really liked it and thought it fit my genre well. My masthead works well in my front cover as it is outlined in contrasting black and blue and uses a two-tone colour scheme to grab the audience’s attention.

Contents Page: For my contents page, I sketched out a variety of different layouts, but decided on this one as I thought that it incorporated my image really well and linked in with my other pages well. I like it because it is simple but effective, and has a similar colour palette to the front cover which I thought would tie in well, but uses a darker blue background which links to the umbrella I used on my DPS. I tried to choose fonts which worked well together as well as being relevant to my genre of pop-rock, and keep it modern. I chose this particular image of Alabama as I like that she is breaking the fourth wall, looking directly at the audience and grabbing their attention. I also really like the pose she is in and I felt that I could use my editing skills to make the image even better. I put key words in blue to draw the reader’s attention to them and make them read articles which they would find interesting.

Double Page Spread: I chose this picture as I thought it looked really dramatic and incorporated the two models really well. I also thought it would be interesting to attempt to overlap the umbrella onto the other page. I decided to do a masked effect on a black and white image, highlighting their eyes and giving interesting pops of colour, which I echoed in my text. I decided to do a top interview article because I thought it would show understanding of my genre and be interesting for the reader.

What went well: I really liked my double page spread in particular. I think it works well as it is a really unique design and fits well with my pop-rock genre.

Even better if: I altered some of the colours in my I changed my contents page to match better with my front cover and double page spread to tie it in even more with my magazine. I could have also experimented more with my images to make them more interesting, however the images which I have used do still fit with my genre

What has changed: I have changed a lot of things since my last draft, including moving text on my front page, and finishing editing my contents page, however I think the biggest thing which has changed in my double page spread as I have really worked on it to get it to fit well as a double page spread. I have also changed this numerous times on my double page spread to find a layout which works well and is something that I like.

A New Improved Contents Page

Second Draft Contents Page

Please click on the image to view a PDF of my Contents Page

What’s New and What’s Changed?

what’s new?
  • I have allocated page numbers and article titles to the ‘Back’ and ‘Feature’ sections, as well as adding the highlighted pieces in outlined boxes, and making key words stand out by putting them in a different colour.
  • I have added photographer credits and an Editor’s note to make the contents page look more natural and realistic.
what’s changed?
  • I have edited the image, including using the Burn/Dodge tools on her eyes, adding black around her eyes to resemble eyeliner to make her eyes pop even more, resizing the image, and adding a Black and White filter excluding her eyes, to really highlight them a lot.
  • I have added in an alternative font to add contrast in the tiles.

Peer Assessment


A New Improved Feature Article

New Improved Feature Article

changes I’ve made:
  1. Made sure I am using the same tense throughout for continuity.
  2. Added more about the collaboration between the artists.
  3. Deleted repetition of words, moved names so they are either all at the start of their speech and formatted that to every question, given more details about their latest collaboration.
  1. I want my article to be as naturalistic as possible, and to be focused on the collaboration as that is what the DPS is about.
What are my targets?
  1. To add more information about the artists’ collaboration, to really make that the focus of my article.

Complete Magazine Draft

Here is a complete draft of my magazine:

Front Page

Please click on the image to view a PDF of the Front Page

Contents Page

Please click on the image to view a PDF of the Contents Page

Double Page Spread

Please click on the image to view a PDF of the Double Page Spread

Overall I am quite pleased with this first draft of my entire magazine. There are things which I could improve on in my magazine, however I am pleased with the overall aesthetic within the magazine, and I especially like my front cover as I felt that I could really be creative with it and it gave me a chance to practice some of my editing skills on Photoshop and Indesign. I am also pleased with my Double Page Spread as I think it works really well together, and I think my Contents page links both my DPS and Front cover into one solid theme which I really like.

Teacher’s Feedback and Screencastify

  • Front cover – looks good –  remove yellow line on edge. Date and issue number move to bottom. Move 5 Seconds of Summer Tour pug downwards.
  • DPS – put white writing in yellow and red, or drop shadow, edit image for umbrella overlap and title, make sure it doesn’t cut it off. Do something to merge the pages together – connect them. Right hand page needs something to make it pop more. Align text to both sides and make sure nothing is hyphenated. Don’t align questions. Play with spacing of cover line. Make distinction between quote and introduction. Put names in bold where they’re answering, think about consistency of quotes.
  • Contents Page – keep working on it – make it link with other pages, i.e. through colour. make title bigger, put masthead on it, either put boxes on everything, or nothing, make her bigger, move editors note to bottom.

So… how is it going?

My experience so far in Media Studies has been great. I have developed and gained new skills that I didn’t know I had, as well as becoming more efficient on technology with which I either had little or no experience. I have also learnt different types of skills, many of which are transferable as well as technical skills in both computer programs like Photoshop and Indesign as well as camera skills.

photoshop & indesign
  • Before Media Studies, I had never used Photoshop or Indesign before, and now I know the basics, like editing images in Photoshop or editing text/pages in Indesign well enough to be able to use them efficiently throughout the production of my magazine. I think if I had not used my resources, for example YouTube tutorials and advice from peers, I would not be as able as I am now and would have struggled to learn the basics of these programs.
  • Some of the techniques that I have learnt on these programs have really helped me throughout the creation of my magazine, without which my final product might have been very different. For example, basic image editing in Photoshop, like erasing and using the paint tool, have helped the overall appearance of my magazine immensely, as well as helping me to create things which work and fit well with each other and my magazine overall. Another example of how techniques I have learnt on editing programs has helped me create my magazine is as simple as the text function on Indesign, without which my magazine would have no content, and with which has enabled my magazine to look realistic and professional.
camera skills

Prior to taking Media Studies, I had no idea how to use a camera, even though I had always wanted to learn how to. However, since beginning the subject I now know the requirements (dependent on certain conditions) to produce the best picture possible in any given photo shoot. For example:

  • Aperture – this is the levels of focus in an image. For example, if you want the background of an image out of focus, you want the Aperture at 5.6 or below. The Aperture for a normal image is 8.
  • ISO – affects how crisp/grainy the image appears, with the standard ISO being 400. In order for the image to appear more crisp, you need a lower ISO, for example at 100, with the opposite being said for a more grainy appearance on your image, with the ISO needing to be at around 2500+.
  • Shutter Speed – depends on the amount of movement in the photo, for example if you want something moving to be caught still with no blur. The start point for Shutter Speed is 125, however it should always be above 60 for hand held cameras.
  • Exposure – this affects whether the image is too bright or too dark, which is important in the overall look of the image. To be adjusted by pressing the shutter.
Transferable skills

As well as technical skills, Media Studies has taught me so many transferable skills which I can use every day and in lots of different circumstances.

  • Teamwork – experiencing working in a team has really been helpful and will transfer well to many different circumstances in life as this is a really important skill to have, as well as being very sought after by employers and companies in all types of industry. Teamwork in general is also a good skill to have as it will help you get work done faster and more easily in the long run, as well as make the end result of what you are making in a team better.
  • Communication – practicing my communication skills has drastically improved the work I have produced, especially in photo shoots, for example if I had not communicated successfully with my models, or the people who I was modelling for, I would not have had such successful photo shoots and it would have made me very disorganised.
  • Organisation – my organisation skills have hugely improved by taking Media Studies, particularly as a result of organising my time and how I spend it doing different activities, as well as organising photo shoots and things like props and costumes within them. As as result, I have gained both better time management and organisation skills which will help me in every aspect of life.

Design Skills 2

Double Page Spread


When cutting out the umbrella to layer over the page of my DPS, I have to ensure that the colours of the two parts match. In order to do this, I first cut out the section of umbrella that I wanted to overlap onto the using the Quick Select tool and the eraser tool, and then created a swatch of the colour that I had used on the original umbrella edit. I then used this colour at a reduced opacity to colour the umbrella section to match. I then erased any excess colour and inserted it into my DPS.

Contents Page

Cutting out the image with the Quick Selection tool:


In order for my image to look clean cut and fit well in my Contents Page, I used the Quick Select tool and the eraser tool to ensure that any edges were clean cut.

Dodge tool:


I used the Dodge tool on Alabama’s eyes to lighten them and make them stand out more. I decided to do this as I felt it would make my image look better as a whole as well as highlighting Alabama’s blue eyes, which is one of my key colours in my overall theme.

Burn Tool:


I used the Burn tool in contrast to the Dodge tool, using it to make the edges of Alabama’s eyes darker, and her pupils darker. I found this tool really useful as it helped me to make the effect created by the Dodge tool subtler and more effective overall. I initially got my information about the purpose of these tools and how to use them from this video:

what went well & Even better if:

I have drastically improved my knowledge of the Adobe software, Photoshop and Indesign, which has allowed me to create a good double page spread. I have also learnt how to use different tools on both Photoshop and Indesign, allowing me to edit images better and create more advanced effects, as well as put together different pages in my magazine more easily as I have progressed. It would be even better if I improved my knowledge about the software in particular even further as it will allow me to create even better coursework and develop it even further. I can do this by practicing using the software, trying different techniques when editing and watching experimentation videos which will allow me to have more options for what I do in my coursework.

star image / genre / narrative

My new skills in design, editing and production have had a huge impact on my star image as knowing how to use the software has really allowed me to edit my star image and portray them in the way which I intended when I took my photo shoots, and really make my images the best versions that they can be. My new skills and improved knowledge have also helped how I show my genre through my magazine pages as I can use my skills to add in information which is relevant to my genre which will help people get an idea for my genre instantly. It has also helped me to create a clearer narrative through my magazine as I could add in an article to my double page spread, which I would have found hard to do at the beginning of creating my magazine, which has allowed me to really express my genre, star images and narrative through words, in an article which includes things like columns and a drop capital to ensure that my narrative gets across to my audience.

Draft of Contents Page

1st Draft of Contents Page

initial plan

When initially planning my contents page, I wanted to have a look at some contents pages which I liked, as well as plan out ideas in my head and on paper as to what it might look like. After drawing out more conventional contents pages as shown above, I decided that I wanted a more minimalist design for my contents page, so I found a contents page that I liked, as shown below, and used that as my main inspiration.

What’s new?
  • Title of page
  • Page number
  • Sections, page numbers for articles, article titles
  • Image
  • Colour scheme cohesive with front cover
  • Minimalist design
What’s next?
  • Add an editor’s note – this might help with the interaction side of the contents page, and would add another convention to my contents page as well as making my magazine look more realistic.
  • Remove the placeholder text, and fill it with page numbers, article titles and article descriptions to fit with the conventions of the page, to make it have relevant content which is important in a contents page.
  • Make keywords stand out more by making them a different colour – this will draw the target audience to the key articles featured in the magazine, for example Jake and Dalehna’s interview.
  • Rearrange so text is evenly spaced around the image to make the page work better as a whole – it needs to be more cohesive.
  • Credit the photo as this will make the contents page look more realistic.