News & Magazine 2

The final look – the online magazine

website look

 

 

This is the final look of our online magazine. ‘H’ magazine: Happiness, Hope & Health. We had been advised not to use another magazine production website called ‘issuu’ where your magazine would be uploaded as a PDF, and because not our group had not much experience of using inDesign programme, we were told to use the original recommendation of WordPress.

We are confident with the finished product as it has a mixture of new stories, reviews, features and video clips too…so we hope people enjoy what they see.

 

 

 

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Writing the news story

BGT

 

 

Next, I had to write a news story on something I felt was very relevant to the subject of our magazine. ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ is a popular talent show on TV which I feel never fails to bring the laughs. I interviewed a few people on their thoughts of the show and they all came to the same conclusion – that it was funny (of course).

To write the article, I followed the Pyramid structure: introduction, expansion of introduction, quote, context, another quote and then the background of the subject. In order to make the article flow, it is essential that I keep to this so it reads as a proper article too.

There were three images in particular that I felt would suit the piece, and this is of the four judges, the logo for the show itself and the advert starring David Walliams (one of the judges) to promote the new series that aired on Saturday 12th April on ITV1. This funny element should perhaps make the reader laugh while they read it (if they remember seeing it on TV).

I included quotes from two of the people I interviewed for this article as I didn’t want it to feel like I had crammed unnecessary quotes in just for the sake of it – they all go nicely and were carefully picked.

Some research was done for the last section of the article – the background section. This part is interesting because you will learn a little bit of history about the show in a summarised form.

I have also managed to keep within the word limit that had been specified within the assignment briefs.

 

Writing the two features for hand-in

Today I set about writing my features which I will include in the online magazine. As we had already as a group planned on what each of our features would be about, I now had to think about the content that would be in the feature itself.

 

  • Travelling the world – is this the answer to happiness?

again for blog

I had already some ideas in my head of the sort of images I wanted to include in order to accompany the text. To best illustrate my points throughout the feature, I images chosen for example, was of a person looking like they have reached their goal at the top of a mountain and a sign post pointing towards particular countries. Within this feature, I wanted to explain the reasons for why some find that by going abroad and travelling, that they are broadening their horizons and feeling a sense of achievement.

I think that this feature is generally very informative of the various reasons why people want to venture out like this and thought it’d be a good idea to include some results from travel surveys which reveal a great deal of interesting information given by the participants.  Also, I gave a brief account of my own experiences of travelling abroad and about the people I met and their thoughts on what they too had learned.

An idea that I thought would be nice was to start off the feature with a quote on travel, so one by Saint Augustine was fitting. Another quote which I mention is my famous hiker Chris McCandless who I felt had some wise words to say about what it is to be happy when it comes to travelling and why it makes you feel this way.

 

  • What is the link between weather and depression?

for blog post

 

With regards to this feature, I felt it was important to talk about the subject of what it is that links weather and depression because it is so common among the population – or susceptible to it at least. So to make this feature enlightening I felt I needed to include quotes from some different people who have had experience with depression and their advice too.

This feature I think is an interesting read and I give a background to what Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is and two of its theories, evolutionary and biochemical theory. Also, I give a list of the recognised symptoms that accompany SAD/depression to give people a better idea.

Advice is also provided on what you can do with the resources that you have at home, in terms of exercise and boosting your mood.

 

Our magazine cover and the title

our sample cover

Our sample magazine cover

This session it was time to agree on a catchy yet simple title for our magazine. Having browsed other examples of good titles, I put the idea forward of just using ‘HAPPY’….simply because it is…SIMPLE! And as you can see from our sample cover above, it works doesn’t it?

During this time, we also started to get to grips with how to use inDesign…something I personally find scary since I don’t know how to use it at all! Above is the result of our basic visual idea of how we’d like the cover to appear. A powerful image which would aid the cover in ‘slapping you in the face’ we decided should be that of a smiling old person, so we looked for great examples on google. We aim to capture an image of our own for this, but these are back ups in case it is needed.

The headings surrounding the cover are placed where we feel is best, without hiding too much of the powerful image.

The size of the mast head was vital too, because we were advised that it’d look much better as a larger font. And we think keeping the colour of the font white is good, seeing as it goes with the colour of the clothes the old man is wearing.

We were also given the chance to think through what we are all going to write for our features and potential news stories. Some of the ideas that came forward was that of interviewing some people from the old people’s home about their life experiences, etc.

Feature-wise, this is who is writing what (so far):

* (?) – subject to change

  • Emily: Music and depression/Fashion (colours)
  • Me: Weather and depression/Travelling (my experience in Fiji)
  • Lydia: Exercise and depression/Realtionships (?)
  • Maria: Food (chocolate)/ (?)
  • Mika: Sport (?) / Volunteer Work (?)

 

—– After much debate and several changes, we have settled on ‘H’ as the title of the magazine because it encompasses ‘happiness, health and hope’ – the three main subject areas of the online magazine.

Choosing themes

Where we took inspiration for the single-lettered title 'H'

Where we took inspiration for the single-lettered title ‘H’

This session, we began to look at the various themes that are available on WordPress, which in turn would help us to see how the magazine will look like depending on the structure of the page.

As it had been agreed that the department would pay for any expenses we were to make through choosing our favourite theme. This is very helpful because the themes that you have to pay for allow you more freedom to install plug-ins and make your magazine come more alive – very handy.

Several great themes stood out to us, but we have managed so far (through a process of elimination) to select 3 of the best ones…and these were…

  • Formation
  • Matheson
  • Point

The reason why these came out and ‘slapped us in the face’ (as it were), is because we liked how there was space for a mast head (title of magazine) at the top, then underneath it one large box for a main image. Below this was the place for where the many articles would be placed. We want the look of our magazine to preferably be simplistic and fresh…as it the whole idea of the magazine is based on positivity/happiness.

We had all been advised to use high quality pictures within the articles because this would of course be more attractive to the reader.

Also, a rough flat plan was created just so we could get a basic idea of how and where the articles would be laid out.

Next we have to design our front cover.

 

 

Discussing ideas for theme of online magazine

So first of all, it had been recommended that we use WordPress as the basis for our online magazine (or newspaper) depending on what our groups have chosen to do. In my group, we decided to do an online magazine because it would be different to what we had done before.

In the groups we got together in, we sat down and wrote out all of our ideas that could potentially be used for the online magazine content and what it should be about.  Some of the ideas that were jotted down were:

  • Travelling —->Cornwall/or the world
  • Student activities
  • Animals
  • Tattoos
  • Environment
  • Sports & Adrenaline
  • FXU
  • Science
  • Culture (‘Hidden Falmouth’)
  • Religion/culture/lifestyle

After this list was made, we realised that rather than choosing one area to focus on, we could bring all of it together and write about each of the subjects.

We then were given the task of suggesting ideas for features to be written….Some of these ideas are as follows:

  • Food – why & how it makes you feel happy ( Some chemicals in food, such as chocolate have chemicals in it that stimulate the brain etc.)
  • Weather & depression (the cases in places such as Norway where they have a high level of suicide due to depression and weather, the relationship being that with months without sunlight leads to depression/& or suicide)
  • Music & happiness (all people have a favourite tune to listen to to cheer them up)
  • Travelling – broadening horizons (some people LOVE travelling around the world)
  • Relationship with animals – happy companions (single individuals who own a pet Cat or Dog, best company)
  • Relationships (what kind of relationships are good, etc)
  • Exercise & depression (the evidence that exercise is recommended by doctors rather than drugs to combat depression)
  • Fashion – the idea of wearing bright colours (bright colours, bright mood)

 

Next up, deciding upon the name of the magazine.