Rolling Stone is a bi-weekly magazine that is published both in print and digitally. It is 8 inches by 10 and 7/8 inches and has an average page count of 100 pages. The content inside is best suited for a magazine format and works well in both print and digital forms because of its short articles and bright graphic elements. The page count is appropriate for this magazine because it is long enough to include a variety of content and stories that engage the reader, but short enough to ensure they are leaving their reader desiring more and therefore more likely to purchase the next magazine. Its physical dimensions are similar to that of other magazines, which helps the reader know that that is the type of publication they are reading. Any drastic change to the size of Rolling Stone may confuse readers because they associate the size with the magazine format. Rolling Stone was originally published in a larger format but changed its dimensions to be more standard in order to increase its readership. Its bi-weekly publishing is more often than most magazines, but mirrors the constantly changing world of music and media.
After doing some research on the Internet, I discovered that all of the graphics, type, etc. that do not bleed on the pages are placed ½ inch from the border of the magazine. The gutters between columns are ¼ inch in each article. Rolling stone uses a column width of 2.2 inches for all of its articles when the article is written in columns of 3. When the text is divided into four columns, not for articles but rather listed content such as new songs, artists, etc., the width is 1.45 inches. Finally, Rolling Stone utilizes graphics to shape their text around. This measurement is arbitrary and depends on the graphic shape. These measurements work graphically because they allow white space for the reader’s eye to rest. The lines between the columns help divide the text so it appears more organized. The use of wrap text around images helps develop character within the graphics and mirrors the idea of music and rhythm within the text.
The magazine includes the following sections: Features, Rock and Roll, Record Reviews, Random Notes, and Movie Reviews. Features is spread out across the magazine, while Rock and Roll appears in the first 20 pages or so. Random Notes are showcased in the middle and the Review sections are towards the end. Each magazine has its own content as well, such as “2014 Year in Review” for the final issue of 2014. By spacing the Feature section throughout, the readers remain engaged in the content. The strong graphics on the Feature sections breaks up the magazine graphically to ensure its looks less text-heavy.
For Rolling Stone’s Feature articles, it utilizes one large photo at the beginning of the story and a smaller collage of photos halfway through the text. With longer articles it may continue to use one or two photos every other page, alternating with a pull quote graphically similar to the original title. For content such as “Albums of the Year”, Rolling Stone includes one photo per album, all the same size and in the same layout. Rolling Stone has minimal white space in its articles, but on title pages it utilizes spread pages to allow for more white space.
The most distracting part of Rolling Stone magazine is the advertisements they allow on content pages. Instead of only utilizing full pages within the magazine for ads, they sell ad space on pages that conclude articles.