Q Magazine Analysis

:
The Stone Roses

By Evie Holmes

Front Cover

Main image: Each member of the band has been featured equally within the main
image, however they have each been given an individual close up portrait. The use of
close up shots may have been included to create a sense of closeness and intimacy
with the audience, where by the reader can develop a connection with each of the
band members and gain a greater understanding of each individual. This idea is also
supported through the use of direct address; in many band group photo shoots only
the frontman gives direct address, however the direct address given from all four
members infers they are all as significant as each other. With the greater amount of
direct address given, the audience are more subconsciously inclined to give the
magazine their attention; as four sets of eyes are focusing on them, rather than just
the
one.
Rule
of thirds: The front cover most definitely follows the rule of thirds convention,
as the main image has been split into a grid of four, where each band member is
positioned within their own box. Each of these boxes represent the four hotspots
within the rule of thirds grid, meaning each of the four members are focus points to
the audience. The idea of each band member possessing the same significance is
supported by the use of rule of thirds, as they equally feature in the four hotspots (key
areas).

Strapline: The strapline “2016
preview” greatly overpowers the
masthead, covering the top of it, as
the strapline is the initial feature of
the cover if observed from vertical
perspective. The enlarged, bold text
stands out to the audience; this
links to the issue being a special
edition, the strapline summarises it.
Released in February 2016, the
audience is made aware
immediately that the content within
the magazine it literally a 2016
preview; with information on
upcoming events/albums that are
taking place in the upcoming year.

Barcode: The barcode featured on the front cover has been positioned vertically in
the lower right corner, taking up minimal space, not distracting the audience of the
relevant content on the cover. The barcode blends in with the background of the
cover, appearing discreet among the over content. Within the barcode features the
issue number/date and price, the positioning of these less significant elements
means a reduced amount of key space is taken up on the cover and again minimally
gathers the attention of the audience. The date, price and website link each follow the
colour scheme presented of red, black, blue and white. These small details are
presented for reference (issue number/date) and promotion (website link).
Cover lines: The cover lines used on the front cover of Q give an insight of the
content featured within the issue. Exampled in this issue are bands and artists
included, such as U2, The 1975 and Kanye West. A brief list of varied artists infers to
the audience the flexible content of the magazine, showing Q focuses on not a specific
genre/audience. Alike the main cover line, general cover lines again can influence the
audience’s outlook on the magazine and therefore their choice of whether or not to
engage in the issue with interest. The cover lines are brief yet informative, following
conventions, as with greater complexity they aren’t as impacting and can become the
main focus, which although significant, cover lines aren’t.

Masthead: The Q magazine
masthead follows conventions, by
being placed in the top left corner
of the cover, in order to stand out
to the audience (when placed on
shop shelves). The masthead
consists simply of the letter Q,
presented through white text on a
red background, implying
simplicity. Despite being one of
the most popular music
magazines today, Q still presents
their masthead considerably,
potentially showing their
significance among competitors.

Model/group: The group featured on the cover of Q magazine is The Stone Roses; an
80’s-90’s indie band who have recently reformed. The Stone Roses were and still are
cultural icons, they gathered an extraordinary following which has been significant
through generations and thus remains today. However, the images shown on the front
cover are portraits of the band during their prime, rather than recent images. Q
magazine may have strategically used these images as the band are most commonly
known with these appearances, making them more instantly recognisable to the
audience. The bucket hat, which Reni (bottom left) has been presented with became a
cultural symbol associated with the band, further greatening their impact. If presented
with their current appearance, the audience may be less likely to gather who the
model/group is, reducing their chance of reading/purchasing the magazine. The use of
the more youthful images of the band benefits Q, as with those presented they are
more likely to gain a sale.
Genre: The clear genre of Q magazine is music, with the main subgenre of rock/indie.
The audience can gather this through the artists presented and listed on the front
cover; The Stone Roses are indie icons and are the main feature of the issue, the cover
lines and puffs include bands/artists such as Wolf Alice, The 1975 and U2, showing the
new and old generations of indie/rock. However, despite indie/rock being the main
subgenre of Q, the magazine also focuses on alternatives such as rap and metal,
supported by the inclusion of rap icon Kanye West and metal band Bring Me The
Horizon within the cover lines. Varied subgenres greatens the target audience of Q
magazine, as it collects an increased interest from music fans of several genres, rather
than specific to the obvious.
Colour scheme: The colour scheme used and presented on the front cover of Q
features red, blue, yellow, black and white. This colour scheme could potentially be
based on the red and white masthead and is developed from there. The backgrounds of
the main images are all plain blue, making the model(s) the clear focus of the images.
The main cover line placed over the main image is white, standing contrastively out.
Red and black are the two other colours used within the general cover lines and banner
at the bottom. The colour scheme consists of primary colours only and thus supports
the idea of simplicity suggested by the magazine/cover.
Anchorage: Anchorage has been used with text placed over the main image: the main
cover line relative to the main image and article within the issue. The main cover line
“The Stone Roses, Ian, John, Reni and Mani: their untold stories” gives the audience a
brief overview of the content which is subject of the main article; the insight helps the
audience decide whether they possess an interest in the main article and want to read
on, or contrastively may dismiss the magazine. This shows how important a main cover
line is for magazines and how it can potentially make or break the interest of the
audience.

Target audience: The general target audience of Q magazine are music fans and
enthusiasts , typically of the indie/rock genres, though this is not specified as the
magazine also consists of varied genres within its content. However with a deeper
analysis, the target audience profile which Q suits best is a white, 30-50 year old,
working class male. Indie and rock are both male dominated genres, which are also
predominantly white. As supported by this example, Q’s main content features bands
from previous decades, e.g. The Stone Roses and The Smiths. Their main followings are
middle aged men who were fans during the band’s prime era, though the adoration has
been passed through generations of music fans. The bands both come from working
class backgrounds, and thus are mostly relatable to those from the same class. With
regards to lifestyle, Q’s target audience profile may be likely to play an instrument,
collect records and attend gigs/festivals, suiting their great musical interest.
Denotation: The initial meaning the audience may gather from the cover, and more
specifically main image, is that The Stone Roses are making a long awaited comeback,
kick started by their feature within this Q magazine issue.

Connotation: By further exploring the denotation and front cover, the audience may
understand the return of The Stone Roses; however may suggest that they have lost
the closeness they once had as a band, as a result of being apart for so long and each
member going their own separate way. The audience may interpret this through the
main image not being of the band as a collective, they are each presented as their own
individual person. A further analysis of the main image could be that despite their
highly anticipated return, the band will never be what they were back in their day,
hence why the images used are from that period rather than the current; or
alternatively, by making a comeback, The Stone Roses want to reach the level of
success they had during the era portrayed.

Representation: From the main images, the representation which I think is being
portrayed is age. Shown during their younger days, the close up portraits of The Stone
Roses somewhat resemble mug shots. The expressions of John and Reni (left) convey
guilt and fear, shown through their wide eyes, low heads and serious mouths.
Contrastively, Ian and Mani (right) are portrayed as the more ‘trouble-maker’ like
characters; as if the band is a gang and they are the more dominant leaders. We can
gather this through their opposing expressions, where Ian is presented in a cheekily
annoyed way, what with his lips being puckered and his eyebrows slightly raised. From
the image, the audience could infer that Ian remains silent in the situation, he will deal
with it but is a man with a plan. Though more similar to Ian, Mani is presented to be
acting in a less mature way, by giving out attitude to those in front of him, supported
by his opened mouth which appears as if he is shouting the odds. This representation
links to the stereotypes surrounding young people set by society, where by they are all
trouble makers and nuisances. The portrayal of the band during their younger days
suggests that though having matured, people still see them as this cheeky, nuisance
character.

Mise-en-scene: The mise-en-scene within the front
cover is presented neatly and of professional standard,
by having followed codes and conventions. The
background displayed underneath all the elements is a
Jackson Pollock painting, another symbolisation
associated with The Stone Roses. In most of their
album/single artwork, The Stone Roses used Jackson
Pollock's work; the iconic splashes of paint are famously
associated with the band, who helped bring a great
success to the work of the artist. The tone of white
within the painting links to the colour scheme used,
along with the splashes of blue, yellow and red. The
clothing of each of the band members also ties in with
the colour scheme, having sported red, yellow and black.

Contents Page

Masthead: The Q magazine masthead is presented at the top of the contents
page, similarly to the top left positioning of the logo on the front cover. In a red
(Q logo colour, as if it has been expanded) rectangular box features the
masthead, contents title and date/issue number. The date is listed again
for reference, for example if the cover of the physical magazine was missing,
the audience could check the contents page to see the release date of the
issue.
Page numbers: Page numbers have been presented next to the images/text
used in the contents, in order for reference and indication. The contents page
features the key articles/content within the magazine; if the reader wanted to
find one of these specific features they can use the contents listings rather
than going through the whole magazine.
Shot types: Many varied shot types have been included within the images
features in the contents, inferring the diverse content which Q magazine
consists of, with regards to age, gender, ethnicity, music genre etc. E.g. the
image of Savages is a long shot, where as Kanye West features in a medium
close up.
Fonts: The fonts used within the contents page remain consistent throughout;
a larger, bold heading for each article/feature listed, with the description in a
standard, simplistic font. The text colour is generally black, in order to stand
out on the predominantly white background. The consistency shown reflects
the professionalism of Q, which is also appealing to and for the audience.

Pictures linked to articles featured in the magazine: Each of the
articles/features listed within the contents page includes a relative image of
the artist subject of the article. This helps to familiarise the audience with the
artist and gain a greater understanding towards them, through elements such
as the model’s clothing, makeup, hair and pose. There is no significant main
image in the contents, however from the front cover the reader will gather The
Stone Roses are subject of the feature article, and therefore are most likely to
also be the main image within the contents, supported by the image of the
band being the largest out of those displayed.

Mode of address: In the image of The Stone Roses, the probable main image,
Mani and Reni are posing with direct address and their arms wide. This
suggests that the two members are welcoming and inviting the audience in to
the article and the bands music + culture; though with a deeper analysis, the
two individual members themselves, as they are the lesser popular in
comparison to Ian (frontman) and John (guitarist). This is supported by Mani
and Reni having less content featured about them in the main article compared
to Ian and John.
The other images included in the contents page sometimes present direct
address, however a mode of address only significantly features in image of The
Stone Roses, further supporting the idea of it being the main image.
Subheadings: The only subheading used in the contents page is “The 2016
Preview”, which follows up the strapline presented on the front cover. There
however is a title for each mentioned feature, simply stating the name of the
artist subject of the article, e.g. Savages, Father John Misty. This again indicates
to the audience who the artist is, if they are unfamiliar with their appearance.
Target Audience: The general target audience mentioned in the front cover
analysis continues to fit the contents page, what with artists included such as
The Stone Roses and Richard Hawley. However, the contents page does reflect
variety and diversity, with the inclusion of Kanye West (rapper) and Dua Lipa
(pop artist). This links to the fact that the Q magazine content and thus
audience is not specific, despite its more predominant focus of indie/rock and
the characteristics within the genres.
House style: Q magazine has a specific house style which is consistently
apparent through the contents page in their issues; a white background is
layered with images of artists featured, with a red ‘contents’ title box,
expanded from the Q logo, and black text. This presentation links to the brand
identity of the magazine; the masthead presented in each issue is consistent,
the letter Q placed in a red square. What with being only a single letter, the Q
masthead has been developed into the magazine’s logo and therefore brand
identity; it is a recognisable and memorable feature.
Mise-en-scene: The mise-en-scene within the contents page is organised into
sections and is therefore appealing to the audience. The images and text tie in
well with each other, despite not being related. The contents page is not
overcrowded like many examples can be, the page is pleasing to view and easy
to understand due to the discreet sectioning.

Layout: The layout of the contents page is well structured and informs the
reader greatly of the kind of content which features in Q magazine. There are
more images included than text, which may appeal to the audience as they get
an instant visual representation rather than having to read. A range of bold yet
simplistic colours have been used within the contents page, another
presentational element which appeals to the audience. Many of the key
magazine elements such as images, text descriptions and page numbers are
included in the contents page, meaning Q have followed conventions, adding to
their professionalism.

Anchorage: Anchored text has been placed over the image of The Stone
Roses, as there is a great deal of dead space within the image. Placing the text
over the dead space means less useful space is taken up within the contents
page and the appearance of the presentation becomes neater; the anchorage
used is practical and logical. Anchorage also indicates which content is relevant
to the artist, in case the audience is unfamiliar with the artist. This is shown in
the images of Kanye West, Dua Lipa and Biffy Clyro, as the mentioning of them
is combined in a short preview paragraph.

Double Page Spread

Drop caps: The letter ‘O’ which begins the article
has been presented in a larger text size to the rest of
the text, in order to grab the reader’s attention and
draw them in to the article. The ‘O’ has been enlarged
10 lines down in comparison to the following text,
overpowering it.
Byline: The byline used under the article heading
consists of well flowing adjectives describing Ian
Brown, the subject of the article. The byline is present
to give a brief description and overview of the article
content, which is an effective feature for the reader as
if they are unsure whether they possess an interest
towards the article, they can read the byline and
come to a decision whether or not to continue and
engage.

Design: The design of the first page of the spread presents the
heading ‘Ian’ as if the name has been spray painted by The Stone
Roses frontman, as his mark of possession. Spray painting is an
activity commonly associated with (delinquent) youth, which links to
the representation of the band and more predominantly Ian (and
Mani) as seen on the front cover. The ‘up to no good’ stereotype links
to the content mentioned within the text on the first page, which
discusses Ian’s time spent in jail. This representation further portrays
Ian and consequently his band as nuisance-to-society trouble makers,
however the article may discuss the maturity of he and the band’s
characters and how this will be reflected within their new music; with
the hopes of turning negative, somewhat prejudiced views around to
their advantage. The dominant colours used within the double page
spread are pink and blue; colours which are stereotypically associated
with the female and male genders. The use of both colours may
symbolise the non-gender specific audience and following which The
Stone Roses had and still have today.

Mode of address: In the main image of Ian Brown,
he is presenting both direct and mode of address.
These features grab the attention of the audience, as
the image shows Ian as if he is talking to the
audience, wide eyed and puckered mouthed. A
connection with the reader is subconsciously built
through Ian’s expression, the audience are therefore
increasingly likely to engage with the article in order
to reciprocate Ian’s virtual conversation.

Captions: Captioning the main image is the text “He
wants to be adored: Brown in his Roses pomp, 1989.”
The caption is a play on words, as The Stone Roses’
most recognisable song is ‘I Wanna Be Adored’. The
caption also links to Brown being misunderstood, he
just wants people to hear him out (as suggested in
the text to the left).

Page numbers: The number of the page which the
article begins on, 36, is placed in the bottom left hand
corner of the page. Presented in small text, it is out of
the way of the main components of the article (text,
image), therefore not distracting the reader from the
content which the editor wants the audience to focus
on. The page number is presented for indication,
however is only shown on one of the pages over the
double page spreads throughout the magazine to
save room for key elements and improve
presentation. Also placed on a small scale next to the
page number is the Q logo, which keeps reminding
the audience of the branding and shows that the
content is the possession of Q’s.

Connotation: The connotation which the audience could gather
with a deeper analysis is that though having reformed, The Stone
Roses identify more as individuals now, supported by them having
their own individual section within the main article. This idea could
link to their distancing from one another during their 20+ years apart
by following separate career paths (remaining in music, however).
Adding to this reduced relation with each other is when Mani
(bassist) joined Primal Scream, he asked Reni (drummer) to also join
with him. Reni however opted to follow his own individual pathway,
he was also the most reluctant towards to reform of The Stone Roses.

Target audience: The target audience again is
similar to that of the general profile for Q as a whole,
especially with the article subject being a white male,
however the use of both blue and pink colours (in
relation to gender stereotypes) may suggest that the
article can equally appeal to both the male and
female genders.
Font and type size: The font and text size used for
the main article text is small and standard, following
conventions. In order to stand out against this, the
byline, headline and grab quote differ with regards to
size, font and colour. These bigger, bolder and
brighter elements add to the presentation of the
double page spread and thus draw the audience in
more due to their subconscious interest.
Denotation: The explicit meaning that the audience
could gather from the double page spread is that Q
magazine have interviewed the members (shown
here, Ian) of The Stone Roses, as part of their
comeback.

Layout: The column width and positioning on the
first page of the spread is equal width and height
wise. This makes the presentation appear neat and
professional, and thus more appealing to the reader.
The general layout of the double page spread is well
structured, with bright yet calm colours, in relation to
the background of the main image. The standout
heading ‘Ian’ with support from the main (and only)
image makes it certainly clear that the article is
about this specific member of The Stone Roses;
suggesting the article will discuss his own personal
life and career, rather than his in the band.

Overall impression: The overall impression which
the reader may receive is that Ian Brown is a cheeky
chap who simply wants to be understood and not
prejudiced due to his status in the music industry.

Main image: The main image shown over the double page spread
portrays a close up of Ian Brown appearing almost as if he is
conversing with the reader. The lighting used in the image shows a lot
of the model’s left side in a shadowed light, potentially representing
the darkness and negative/prejudiced comments Ian has faced
throughout his career. Though being portrayed mostly in a clear,
bright light, it is suggested that the ‘The Stone Roses’ frontman has
overcome these comments/judgements, and is now living the dream
in his own light, letting nothing stop him from being the best.

Grab quotes: The grab quote used which has been
layered over the main image is a quote from
someone else on Ian Brown, rather than the man
who is the subject of the article himself, defying the
norms of an article’s structure/presentation. Having
said this, the article content include more
predominantly the views and experiences of other
people on and with Ian, rather than an interview with
the ‘The Stone Roses’ frontman. This therefore
makes the quote more relevant to the article, giving
the audience an insight.

Elements
which
connect the
three parts
together

• The most obvious element which connects the three magazine parts together is the
relevance of The Stone Roses, as they are the cover feature, main story listed in the contents
page and then are each individually subject of the main article. The band name and images of
the band, both together and individually, appear throughout the issue of Q magazine.
•The branded Q logo appears on each of the magazine parts, reducing in size as the magazine
progresses. This connects the parts together as they each consist of a similar element; the
consistent branding shows that the content is the possession of Q’s.
•The use of both images and text connects the three parts together, as they each consist of
these elements, in order to inform the audience of the content within the issue.