The design for the cover of a magazine is the most important. In a single glance the cover should present a compelling image that awakens a readers curiosity while telling the readers about its main story and who you are as a magazine.

PicsArt provides you with all the required tools to create a stunning magazine cover. Here are some general design tips to help you create a more professional cover for this week’s PicsArt Graphic Design contest.

Choosing a Name

The name of your magazine should suit your personality as a magazine. Find a name that instantly tells readers who you are.

Design Tip: The name of the magazine is traditionally the biggest piece of text, written across the top of the cover. Magazine titles are usually only one word, but occasionally two.

Feature Story Title

Be creative with your lead story. Ask the readers a question, throw together an absurd phrase, your goal is to make an impression.

Design Tip: The title of your feature should be the second largest piece of text. You have a little more freedom for deciding where to write. Try not to place the title too close to the Magazine title, or if you do, make it a different font so that it stands out.

Choosing a Cover Photo

The image you select will be the face of your magazine. You only have one chance to make an impression, so make it a good one. Choose something that captures the eye and inspires a strong emotional response. 

Design Tip: The cover photo should be the most visible feature of your magazine.

Adding Other Stories (optional)

You may be feeling extra creative and want to add smaller stories. Use smaller titles and insert extra images to offer readers a larger array of content.

Design Tip: These stories should be the smallest aspects of your cover. Make sure that they don’t clutter your cover too much or distract observers from your main feature. 

Creating a Visual Theme

The visual presentation of your content directs the reader’s eyes. The most important items should stand out, make them larger or contrast them with the background to make them more visible. A cover is an impression at a glance; so make sure the most important information is easy to spot.

Font: The main purpose of a font is that it tells readers how things should be read. A serious journal requires discrete and elegant lettering, while more entertaining publications might elect to use a more flamboyant style. Play with size, style, color, bold and italics to differentiate and emphasize sentences, words, or even letters. Use your font to direct the reader’s eyes towards what’s most important.

Color Scheme: The color palate you choose for your magazine is of equal importance. Blues and greys are elegant choices for a revered magazine. Reds and yellows convey heat and excitement, while earth tones can be used to create a more natural effect. Use a small handful of colors for simplicity or flood the reader’s senses with a more explosive palate full contrast and chaos.

Putting it All Together: When you’re assembling your magazine, where you position each item is critical. Isolate items by surrounding them with empty space, or incorporate them into the image. Write white titles over a blue sky to create a cloud theme, blend them into the scenery by writing them along the side of a car, or overlap an image over a piece of the main title. Make sure that the font, titles, images, and colors work together to create a net effect.

To conclude, there is nothing easy about designing a magazine cover, but if you do it right, you may be amazed at the results. Plan ahead, experiment, and above all keep it simple. Try not to overcrowd the cover with too much, just give the readers something easy, interesting and beautiful. Most importantly, don’t forget to have fun.