Paper of the Month: National Collective Zine

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February’s Paper of the Month is the National Collective Zine, a new publication from an arts movement ‘founded with the aims of arguing the positive case for Scottish independence.’ 

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It’s a limited edition improved tabloid (only 200 available) with contributions from a great collection of Scottish artists and creatives, including specially commissioned artwork from Alasdair Gray and an exclusive interview with Mogwai’s Stuart Braithwaite. There’s photography, fiction, collage, political and cultural commentary, poetry — all contained within 36 well-designed pages.

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Copies are available from the National Collective shop for £3.50, while supplies last. Thank you for printing with us!

About Paper of the Month

Every month, we give a £100 Newspaper Club voucher to one paper shared in our Newsagent. If you’ve printed a paper with us, share your paper (through the settings in your account) for a chance to win.

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Filed under: art, illustration, Paper of the Month

Old-fashioned and radical

It’s great to see Newsweek relaunching their print publication, which they shut down only 14 months ago. This time around, they’re going for a luxurious premium product, perfect to sink into and enjoy at the weekend.

Nieman Journalism Lab has more:

The newest Newsweek strategy is both old-fashioned and radical. It’s old-fashioned in the sense that it is reviving a ghost print brand with printing presses on two continents. It’s radical in its pricing. Even the high-flying, high-quality weekly New Yorker only charges about $79 a year, while Time goes for $30 and The (monthly) Atlantic for about $25. Newsweek is going way beyond those prices.

The print launch is all wrapped up in a lovely package, led by magazine veteran Jim Impoco. In fact, that package — with design by Robert Priest and Grace Lee — seems almost anachronistic, a throwback to another era of plush and flush magazines. In a sense, the newest Newsweek is trying to create its own category: NewsLuxe.

From publishers like Pitchfork, to our own Long Good Read collaboration with the Guardian, it feels like 2014 is the year that the big ‘digital first’ publishers realise that print’s still brilliant, and does lots that the digital publication can’t.

Shameless pitch time:

You don’t have be Newsweek or the Guardian to give this a go. ARTHR, our very own newspaper layout tool, makes it easy to turn your blog into a beautiful newspaper. You don’t even have to handle the sales or distribution — put your paper in The Newsagent and we’ll do that for you, sending you your profit shortly after. And if you get stuck with anything, our friendly team is here to help. Happy printing!

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Filed under: news, Newsagent

Seven on the Spot

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Seven on the Spot was one of the first papers to go on sale in the Newsagent, and we couldn’t be happier to open shop with such a lovely paper on offer. It’s a collection of writing from seven author friends, all required to use the same set of seven words in their stories. Co-editor Anne Shewring says: ‘Even though we started work on the same day, with the same words in mind, all our stories are very different.’ We asked her to tell us more about the project:

Seven On, now in its second edition, is a collection of short stories, written by a group of writers and friends. Our first collection was born over a drink. Sandra Deeble and Anne Shewring were grumbling about how hard it is to get any short stories published.  Then it occurred to us – we could do it ourselves. Anne had already published a couple of newspapers with Newspaper Club, and the format seemed ideal for getting something done easily.

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I’m not sure where the idea for seven came from; maybe it was how many people we knew who were prepared to write a story and not get paid for it. Our first theme was austerity, the word of the moment in 2011, and we asked illustrator Mike Howard to design and illustrate the newspaper, which he did splendidly.

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Seven on Austerity looked great and it was lovely to see our work in print, so lovely, in fact, that we decided to produce another edition. We invited writers to send us stories on the theme of laughter, but then didn’t really enjoy anything that came our way. Abandoning that idea, we went back to the original seven, with one change, and went away for the weekend, to Anne’s tiny cottage in Derbyshire, one of our writers coming all the way from Gettysburg to join us.

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We took a walk around the village of Holbrook and, inspired by what we saw, each of us returned with a word. The seven writers then produced a story containing all of these seven words. The result is Seven on the Spot. Mike Howard has again illustrated, with help from a few friends, and has produced a really lovely looking newspaper.

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We’re happy if anyone reads our Seven On papers, and there are some great stories in there, but really, the fun is in the writing and publishing. We’d love to be able to afford to produce thousands and give them away to commuters to jolly up their journeys, but at the moment that’s not possible.  Maybe one day. In the meantime, watch out for Seven On number three.

Seven on the Spot and Seven on Austerity are available to buy in the Seven On shop in the Newsagent for £4.25 each, delivered.

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Filed under: art, case studies, illustration, Newsagent

Culture on a Shoestring (and through a snowstorm)

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Culture on a Shoestring is a community magazine based in Lancashire and they’ve just printed Issue 4 with us, a Bruce Nauman special to coincide with a new exhibition at the Harris Museum and Art Gallery. The papers arrived in Preston earlier this month and the team got straight to work distributing them around town, even braving an unexpected snowstorm that resulted in a rather heroic-looking photo. We salute your effort, Anthony!

We asked project manager Laura Haddick to tell us about the publication:

Culture on a Shoestring is a free magazine that started as a Money for Life Challenge project run by the Blaze team. We created it to promote free and low-cost culture in Lancashire and the surrounding area, so people in our community can access quality culture even if they’re on a budget. Writing about hidden gems, large creative institutions and family-run businesses alike, we’ve built a Culture on a Shoestring community in our native Lancashire that helps young people to develop their writing skills and find a place in their local creative network. Team members Anthony and Shona have gained Gold Arts Awards through their involvement!

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Getting the magazine printed as a mini newspaper has enabled us to pop copies in cafés, arts venues and libraries across Lancashire for people to find, read and pass on. We’ve had some lovely feedback and found new contributors as a result!

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The magazine is also available online, feel free to have a look and let us know what you think.

Blaze is a youth arts organisation supported by Lancashire County Council, Curious Minds, Blackpool Council and Arts Council England. The magazine is designed by Ollie Briggs.

If you’re in the Lancashire area, keep up with Culture on a Shoestring on Facebook and Twitter. Thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: case studies

The pleasures and possibilities of getting lost

Magazine design Hole & Corner magazine

There’s been some resonant coverage in the national papers recently about print publications. The Guardian posted a gallery of beautiful magazines setting out to prove print isn’t dead and considers the resurrection of the magazine in the digital age:

These magazines are…a result of the possibilities offered by the new technology that was supposed to kill print culture – they sell and distribute online, they crowdfund, they invent their own business models on the hoof.

We’re really proud to have been involved in some such crowd-funded and community-driven projects like The Peckham Peculiar My Favo(u)rite Magazine and Revealing Craft (to name just a recent few)all of which have used the intersection of physical and digital to create something quite special. Print succeeds today in novel and unexpected ways, evidenced by exciting (and now full-time!) enterprises like Stack Magazines, a brilliant subscription service that posts you a different independent magazine every month. Buying a magazine or newspaper isn’t just about getting the news anymore, it’s also a chance to experiment and discover something new a way of bringing people and ideas together and creating something to be turned over and read again, not thrown away at the end of the day.

Not driven by celebrity or publicists’ schedules, the curated storytelling, often around a single theme, is closer to the storytelling of novels – they’re narrative journeys of ideas, pictures and activities…they offer the pleasures and possibilities of getting lost.

We’ve seen all sorts of orders come through our system since we started Newspaper Club, and still so many surprise us. We’re looking forward to seeing what happens as we continue to develop the Newsagent to help you find, and get lost in, some really brilliant newspapers.

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Filed under: media, news, Newsagent, Newspaper Stories

Lichtspiele and cinematic typography

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“Lichtspiele” is the German word for the distinctive style of early 20th century cinema. It’s also the name of a fantastic typography newspaper from Stefan Huebsch, a graphic designer from Saarbruecken, Germany. Stefan is currently studying communication design at the University of Applied Sciences in Trier and wrote to tell us about his publication:

Lichtspiele is a diploma project about exceptional movie theaters in Germany, alongside interviews with movie theater owners, cinema operators and a bunch of real film nutcases. There are also pictures of the film theaters and infographics about cinema history.

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The  cinemas are all special in their own way– from the world’s oldest drive-in to a movie theater where the film posters are all hand-drawn.

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In addition to being a newspaper about these cinemas Lichtspiele is also a headline font. It transports you back to a time where neon lights and marquee letters decorated cinema facades. The fonts shown in the newspaper are reminiscent of 1920’s movie theater programmes combined with a double-sided movie-poster.

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It was a quite nice experience to create this newspaper, from test-printings to the final product, which was — by the way — delivered fast as hell. Unpacking the box of newspapers, the smell of paper and print brings you back in time where ‘digital’ was just something sci-fi.

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Head over to Stefan’s website to see more of his work, and you can also follow him on Twitter. Lovely stuff Stefan, thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: art, case studies, students, typography

At work with Tom

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Tom spoke with Magculture about Caravan Club bunting and our new print-on-demand Newsagent. It’s up on their blog now if you want to head over and have a read.

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Filed under: engineering, news, Newsagent

The visual language of the London Underground

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The London Underground operates on a cryptic visual language that few people are aware of, and even fewer understand. Graphic designer Reece Taylor’s digital tabloid Underground Codes seeks out these easily overlooked ciphers and offers a rare explanation of their meaning. It uncovers some fascinating quotidian details– for example, platform category stickers displaying A or B tell staff what type of platform they’re on: an ‘A’ is a platform where the driver needs mirrors or monitors to see the entire platform; a ‘B’ is a platform where he or she can see the entire platform through the train window. Who knew? Reece said about the project:

This project was for my final major research project at the University of Portsmouth. The project was an exploration into the rich visual language on the London Underground and during my research I discovered that beyond the literal visual language that we associate with it such as the roundel there was trails of another unknown visual language.

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The newspaper is designed as an introduction into that unknown rich visual language and celebrates the signs that surround us as we commute through the Underground on a daily basis. While celebrating the existence of the signs it is also giving recognition to the workers who use them and who have kept the service running for 150 years.

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You can look through Underground Codes in the (newly refurbished!) Newsagent and see more of Reece’s design and typography work on Behance. Thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: art, case studies, students

An Exciting Announcement

The very last newspapers being posted

Since the beginning of Newspaper Club, we knew that helping people print their paper was just half the challenge.

When we made our very first paper, Things Our Friends Have Written On The Internet, we spent two weeks collecting addresses, stuffing envelopes, licking stamps and lugging sacks of newspapers down to the Post Office.

It was hard work – much harder than we’d expected – and we knew it could be made a lot easier. Which is why we’re very pleased to announce that…

From today you can sell a newspaper directly from our site. We’ll handle the payments, printing and delivery — you just need to design your paper.

Here’s how it works:

  1. You write and design your paper.
  2. You print a test copy (if you haven’t already), write some blurb for your store and set a price for your paper.
  3. When someone wants to buy one we take their money, print them a copy and ship it directly to them.
  4. We take our cut and send you your cut.

There’s no setup fee, no paperwork, and no minimum sales. It’s that simple.

Fittingly, the first paper on sale is Things Our Friends Have Faved On The Internet 2014, a follow up to the paper that started it all. It turns out that no-one blogs anymore, so this time around it’s a brilliant selection of faves and likes from Twitter, Flickr and Instagram, from a selection of our friends. Yours for just £5.25, delivered.

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We’ve written a page with more detail about the pricing, how the payments work, which papers are eligible, and more.

We’re going to be rolling this out to all our publishers over the next few weeks. If you’ve got a publication you’ve already printed with us that you’d like to start selling, we’d love to hear from you. Just send us email with a link to your page in the Newsagent, and we’ll take it from there.

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Filed under: Announcements

The IRFC Special Edition Catalogue

IRFC Studio catalogue 2014 out now!!

The IRFC is an interdisciplinary design and consulting studio that offers a whole range of services, from creating miniature bus stop table numbers for the London Transport Museum to branding the Barbican. They needed to create a special edition catalogue to bring all their best projects together and chose to make a newspaper — a traditional tabloid to be precise, and it looks brilliant. In fact, we think they should include newspaper design in their next catalogue. We asked founding director Driss to tell us a bit about it:

The IRFC Studio prides itself on bringing together various disciplines under one roof. The Catalogue provides a fun, engaging and visually rich tool for new and existing clients of the IRFC Studio to find or create powerful solutions for their own business. Included are hardware and collateral items for point of sale, cutting edge graphic and interior design, printed materials, online marketing strategies and much more. Working with Newspaper Club on the Special Edition of our Catalogue came as second nature as both parties worked tirelessly to perfect the final look, feel and quality of the publication.

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Using a traditional tabloid newspaper style for the catalogue was key in extending the IRFC Studio brand into the real world.  Having a ‘run of the mill’ (pardon the pun) brochure just wasn’t an option!  The newspaper had to maintain quality of image and text whilst providing a hands on experience that fully engaged with the reader, making them want to read every page and of course, make contact!

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The service and unique nature of the Newspaper Club was a perfect fit with our goals for the Catalogue.  The team at Newspaper Club are extremely helpful and understood our end goals.  My team and I are really pleased with the quality and finish of the end product.

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You can ask for a copy of the catalogue on their website, and follow The IRFC on Twitter to see updates from the studio. Thank you for printing with us!

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Filed under: case studies

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