As I mentioned a few times earlier this year, I was incredibly excited to see my buddy Andrew Lee redesign the Japan Times. At the most recent PechaKucha Night in Tokyo (Vol. 147, held on my birthday no less) he did a presentation on how the whole redesign came about, and it’s now available online. It’s a great watch.
I was reading the latest issue of Wired this morning, and with the mention that the title is starting to gear up for its 25th anniversary (in 2018), and with Monocle just last month celebrating its 10th anniversary, it made me realize how loyal I tend to be to magazines I really like.
Not only are these magazines part of my very small pile of regular reads — along with Entertainment Weekly, which celebrated its 25th anniversary a couple of years ago — the other thing that these three titles share is that I’ve been reading all of them since the very first issue. For all of them, there have been very short periods where I may have fallen off for a few issues — mostly because of big changes in my life, like moving to Asia (China, and then Japan) — but it’s still interesting to see how loyal I’ve stayed to these titles.
I say that these are the only three titles I regularly read, and that’s not to say I don’t read any other magazines — I love a lot of indie titles, I still listen religiously to Monocle‘s The Stack podcast about magazine publishing, and would like to be reading titles like Edge and Time regularly, but for the former I can’t find print copies in Montreal and dislike the PDF-like digital edition, and for the latter I don’t want to buy the print edition and also dislike the PDF-like digital edition. In fact, I do most of my magazine reading digitally (I’ve been reading Wired and Entertainment Weekly digitally ever since they launched their iPad editions), and so there’s only Monocle that I read in print — sure, it’s because they don’t offer an iPad-edition, but to be honest, it’s also a beautifully produced paper product that I love holding in my hands.
There’s not real point to this post other than to say, shit, I’ve been reading these magazines for quite a while now.
In his latest Ametora Dispatches newsletter, David writes up a nice essay about the the recent closings of “Harajuku fashion” magazines Fruits and Kera — and he also points out this article, that I haven’t had a chance to read yet, but that looks like a decent look at the past and present of the Harajuku street style.
My buddy Ian Lynam is simply one of the smartest people I know on this planet, and when he writes something, you should pay attention. His latest zine — which you can order online from his Wordshape webstore — acts as a guide to new graphic design graduates. I also highly recommend his Start Somewhere zine, which sorta inspired me to get writing again (which led to the rebirth of this here blog).
This week marked the 120th anniversary of The Japan Times, and the big news to come out of this celebration has been a complete redesign of the print edition of the newspaper, taking effect on April 1 (but they released a preview edition this week). The most amazing part of this news is that it’s my good friend Andrew Lee who is behind the redesign — oh, and he just happens to be the person who designed our Arcade Mania book. Andrew wrote three essays about the redesign, first about the redesign as a whole, then about the new logo (pictured above), and then looking through the various logos the paper has had through the years.
I’m really happy to see the paper get a new look like this — following the nice web redesign it got a few years ago (also created by a friend, Benjamin Thomas of Bento Graphics). I’m also quite proud to have been a Japan Times columnist for a decade — with my “On: Design” column, that ran monthly from 2005 to 2015 — and to have been part of the JT’s 120 years.
Street fashion magazine Fruits has just published its final issue (pictured). The reason? According to the magazine’s founder (and editor, and chief photographer) Shoichi Aoki, there just aren’t enough “cool kids” out on the streets anymore. Sad indeed. This Spoon & Tamago post has more details on the magazine’s closure.