Field Notes – Space – The New York Times Magazine


For my field note assignments, I will be analyzing the New York Times Magazine. This magazine is 8 inches by 10 ½ inches – falling a little shorter than a standard piece of paper. It is published on a weekly basis, hitting the shelves of stores across America every Sunday. The New York Times Magazine is published so frequently because it features articles that are too long for the newspaper. It is also known for its photography along with its puzzles. This decision is successful because the New York Times newspaper is extremely popular and widely read; therefore, it makes sense to pair it with a long-form publication that feels like an extension of the paper. 


This magazine has .375 inch margins on the top, left, and right. The bottom margin is .63 inches. The gutters measure in at the same length as the top, left, and right margins – .375 inches. Each page has three columns that are 2.375 inches wide. The space between each column is roughly .25 inches. The use of small margins and an abundance of text works for this publication because it resembles the newspaper. Generally, people read the newspaper strictly to read about news and current events, not so much for the visual appeal. The New York Times Magazine understands the priorities of its readers and made these decisions accordingly.



Layout and White Space

The average story with the New York Times Magazine is seven pages; however, I found that they generally only display six pages together and then direct you to flip to the end of the magazine to finish the remaining page. I’m curious to see if this design decision rings true in future editions that I purchase. I noticed that there is not a great use of white space within the publication. The text runs very close to the edge of the pages and the columns are very closely aligned, leaving this a text-heavy magazine. The introduction to “The Culture Pages” features the largest use of white space throughout the entire magazine.