Wired has a very unique feel to it, which carries into their unique outline for the sections in the publication. Besides being broken down into sections, each issue also revolves around a central theme. February 2011, was named the Underworld Issue, which featured over 130 pages of tips, tricks, and the dark truths hidden in the shadows of the world, as according to Wired.
There are four main pieces to the magazine every month, the start (which is the front of the book section), test (the fence), Play (the well), and then a features sections. This is followed by a back of the book section, which does not have a name. I do like how Wired uses interesting names that follow their feel of the magazine, very straight to the point, but creative and bold.
Start: This month’s design for “Start” stuck out from the rest of the publication. With a diagonal black and white striped border around all of the pages of the section, it makes it easy for readers to quickly thumb though and open up to these pages. This section included short one page articles/question and answer sessions in order to get the reader acquainted with the dark side before diving into the longer articles in the rest of the magazine. All of the pages inside had the same design format, same border, same type used for headlines and decks,and same body copy. The same colors were also carried throughout the section on every page, including inside pages.
What I didn’t like about this section is how without the design format, there isn’t really any other recognition or label that the section is indeed the Start section. The front only has a tacky graphic that is hard to make out. I don’t believe there was any hierarchical element to how important stories are. Within this section it is also pretty consistent that there is an add every other page on the right hand side.
Test:This section is a fence to the well of book, Play. It’s front is mostly taken up with a picture, a short paragraph and tacky graphic of the section title. I think the other pages of the section, only two, are much better designed, although they stick with the same blacks, grays, and lime green used in the front, although the same graphic is used in the oddest place on the page.
This section does maintain the same boldness, by using the dark colors and bold typefaces from the previous section. Also, it only had adds on the right hand side of each facing pages.
Play: This section has six subsections, MUSIC, ARTS, FILTER, PRINT, SCREEN, and DECODE. This section is very similar text wise to the Start section. There are many short, one-page articles on more dark topics that fall into the sections listed above. The front of this section is the most elaborate in any of the sections in the magazine. It has only an illustration and the folio for the section, that continues throughout the rest of the pages.
The inside pages follow the same design with a solid black boarder and lime green and white outlines and type colors. The graphics and photos used are just as elaborate as the front, but just smaller. This section follows the same format for ads too, with all of them being on the right hand side of facing pages.
Features: This section has the most interesting and unique designs. At first I didn’t think there was a section front, because it looks like an ad. It is on the right hand side, doesn’t use bold colors and the typeface is very small. The rest of the inside pages are each designed to fit the articles, which are on average four to six pages.
There are no ads in this section which I found very interesting. Noting else in this section really follows the rest of the magazine which makes it stick out from the other sections well.