For my capstone project, I not only want to show some of my best skills that I have acquired as a communications major, but I also wanted to complete a project on a concept that I am both passionate about and have a strong interest in. Having stated that, I’ve made the decision to launch a fashion magazine that will feature the emerging talents and designers in the Philadelphia region. Fashion has a significant influence on society in many ways as it serves as a visual language for expressing cultural identity, individual expression, and societal shifts. Fashion is an art form that unites people worldwide, capturing the creative energy of designers and promoting a feeling of shared identity and respect for varied styles.
In terms of the magazine, it would act as a showcase for the work and creativity of the many gifted designers and fashion enthusiasts in the Philadelphia region whose work often remains underexplored. It would provide a dedicated platform for exhibiting and appreciating the diverse array of local talent, while also fostering a sense of pride and recognition for the community. In addition, fashion trends, designer interviews, and pieces on the nexus between culture and fashion would all be covered by the magazine. Philadelphia, with its thriving cultural scene and rich history, is a hidden talent pool that can provide new insights into the fashion business due to its distinctive blend of varied influences. The magazine could provide these creatives a platform to become more widely known and visible, by showcasing the work of local designers and fashion enthusiasts. A magazine dedicated to fashion and design with a Philadelphia focus also has the ability to foster a unique local voice in global fashion discourse.
In addition, I want the magazine to highlight a variety of looks from streetwear to high fashion that contribute to Philadelphia’s distinct fashion scene. This magazine, in my opinion, has the ability to compile these diverse trends and present them in a way that provides readers with a comprehensive overview of the city’s fashion scene. In a lot of ways, this magazine could also serve as a style guide that caters to a broad audience with varying tastes.
The form for my project will be a traditional flip through magazine highlighting some of Philadelphia designers and local fashion enthusiasts. I want the magazine to be about 10 pages (not including the cover page), and consist of high-quality images of the artists design. I also plan on conducting short interviews (asking about 10 questions) on what is the inspiration behind some of their looks, what fashion means to them, insights into their creative process, styling tips, etc.,. I will then include this as a part of the writing section of the magazine and I will do this for each designer/fashion enthusiast featured. Since I want to show the versatility of fashion in the city, I plan on featuring distinctive fashion looks on each page. However, even though every fashion look will be very different, I want to maintain a color scheme and aesthetic throughout, making it visually appealing and cohesive for my audience.
Although, I could not find actual examples, here are a few images of what I want the form of my magazine to resemble:
Some hardcopy examples would be fashion segments from publications such as Vogue, W magazine, Dazed, Harper’s Bazaar, etc.,.
Technology and Materials:
First, for the graphic design aspect of my magazine, I am going to use platforms such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe Illustrator, Canva, and Figma. This project will also require me to have a high-quality camera (I have an experienced photographer who is capturing each picture) and I plan on editing these images on Adobe Lightroom.
Audience and Impact:
A broad spectrum of individuals interested in fashion, style, and Philadelphia’s creative culture would likely be the main audience for my magazine. I believe that those who are passionate about fashion and who want to keep up with local designers, trends, and events would be drawn to this publication as well. My primary audience would also include fashion students, professionals, and people in similar fields who are interested in the local fashion industry. Additionally, local fashion companies looking for opportunities for collaboration and advertising, including boutiques, retailers, and other businesses in the fashion community, may also be interested in this magazine. This publication can also have a huge impact for fashion designers and enthusiasts looking to showcase their work as it provides a platform for them to gain exposure within and beyond the Philadelphia area.
Furthermore, the diversity and cultural depth of Philadelphia’s fashion scene will be highlighted in this publication, which will reflect the city’s distinct identity and promote a feeling of community among local designers, fashion admirers, and industry professionals, opening up opportunities for networking and collaboration. The magazine can also be used for inspiration and education. Students and professionals in the fashion business will find it educational and inspiring as it provides insight into the creative processes and sources of inspiration by local designers.
I believe that people will be interested in my magazine because first, people are naturally drawn to any sort of content that reflects their local community. With that said, a magazine that highlights Philadelphia designers helps readers feel more connected to the city because they can see the creativity and talent that exists there. Furthermore, Philadelphia possesses a particular cultural identity that can be captured and celebrated by a local fashion magazine such as this one. It’s possible that readers will be excited to discover and appreciate a fashion scene that honors the city’s culture, variety, and creative energy.
Although I have never created a magazine before, I do have experience using various platforms needed to complete this project that I have used in past COM courses. For example, in COM202: Visual Design, with Ian Sampson, I completed various projects using platforms such as, Adobe Photoshop and Figma, which is what I plan to use in order to complete my magazine. More specifically, in Visual /Design, we had to complete a project, designing and incorporating 3 different words while editing different images on any topic of our choosing (I no longer have the link, however, when I find the project, I will add it in).
I believe that this project will help reflect my educational experience in the COM department and the university because, I feel as though through this magazine, I can harness and showcase some of the best skills I have acquired during my college experience. Even though I am a transfer student, I can successfully say that I have taken enough COM classes here at Saint Joseph’s and at my former university as well that have given me more than enough knowledge on how to complete a task such as this, successfully. This project is ultimately taking into account and applying everything I’ve learned and am learning in COM202: Visual Design, COM373: Web Design and Development, as well as layout and media courses I took at my previous university. I plan on taking the skills I developed in these courses to design my magazine, create a cover page, title/logo and experiment with different fonts, hues, filters, etc.,. The goal of my magazine is to showcase and highlight local fashion enthusiasts and designers and in order to successfully do this, I need to present my work in a way that is visually/aesthetically pleasing and captivating to my audience. With this said, I plan to take what I learned in both Visual Design and a layout/editing course I took at my previous university about what constitutes good design. This includes the main design principles I learned such as such as unity, rhythm, balance, contrast, and emphasis, and realizing how these ideas affect visually appealing and functional designs. In order to effectively communicate within design, I will also utilize the knowledge I have gained about the anatomy of type and typefaces, including type selection, matching, and arrangement. In addition, I adopted a number of methods for positioning visual components on a page or screen during these classes. Finally, utilizing programs like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, I have gained knowledge of editing techniques including, enhancing, retouching, and modifying photographs in the context of design projects.
I want to start by doing a lot of research on Philadelphia’s fashion culture, including finding up-and-coming designers, well-known brands, and unique styles that set the city apart from others. This would not only include looking up local fashion designers, but simply being in the city physically and taking inventory of the different looks I’m seeing, which will in turn give me an idea about the versatility of Philly’s fashion scene. Again, one of the main objectives of this magazine is to show how distinctive and diverse fashion is in the city. With this said, as a part of my research, I also plan to find designers and local fashion enthusiasts that have completely different styles from high fashion to streetwear, so I can show Philly’s distinctive range. Additionally, I plan to use social media to my advantage during the research process as well and more specifically, apps such as Instagram and TikTok. I will use these platforms to discover some local talent and connect with individuals who are apart of the Philly fashion scene. My goal is to build relationships with designers, influencers, and enthusiasts to create a sense of community around my magazine.
Furthermore, I also plan to explore and evaluate Philadelphia’s local fashion shows, exhibitions, and events as well as staying informed of participants, scheduling, and subjects for my magazine. As a part of my research, I also want to examine the cultural and historical factors that have shaped Philadelphia’s fashion. This includes determining the influences that regional customs, artwork, and culture have on locals’ fashion preferences.
One of the biggest obstacles I may face during this process is not only finding local designers/enthusiasts to highlight, but scheduling times to interview and getting people to talk to me and show interest in this magazine. It takes a lot of networking, time, and effort to ensure that local designers are involved and that a wide range of styles and perspectives are represented as well. With that said, another challenge I may face is properly exemplifying the diversity in Philly fashion. Due to the city’s size, Philadelphia’s fashion scene, while lively, might not be as well-known or diverse internationally as it is in fashion capitals like New York or Paris. Having said that, integrating high fashion design with streetwear could be difficult. In order to overcome some of these challenges, establishing and preserving connections with nearby designers and influencers is vital for me during this process.
In terms of resources, there is a great deal of equipment I will need throughout this process. This includes but is not limited to:
- Cameras– Professional mirrorless or DSLR bodies to capture high-resolution photos (my friend who is a photographer has a Canon camera).
- Camera Accessories– Camera batteries, memory cards with more than enough storage, lens cap, extra batteries and chargers, etc.,.
- Lenses– A range of lenses for various applications (e.g., portrait lenses for close-ups, wide-angle lenses for group photos).
- Tripods for stabilization– Reliable tripods for steady photos as well as stabilizing gimbals.
- Computers/Laptops– For design and photo processing/editing.
- Graphic Design Software and Other Editing Platforms– Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe Illustrator, Canva, Figma, etc.,.
- External Storage– For storing and backing up large image files, using cloud storage or external hard drives.
Week 3– Start conducting research such as, identifying local fashion designers and brands. Make a list of these contacts and begin reaching out.
Week 4– Narrow down to 5 different designers/enthusiasts. Schedule interview and photoshoot times. Come up with 10 interview questions and make sure all equipment for this process is ready to go.
Week 5- Plan to conduct at least two interviews and take pictures.
Week 6- Begin to edit content (images) from the week before and conduct two more interviews/take pictures.
Week 7- Continue to edit the images gathered and conduct final interview/take pictures.
Week 8- Begin designing the layout of the magazine such as, color schemes, font styles, graphics, etc.,.
Week 9- Continue to edit and design the magazine layout. By this week the first five pages should be nearly complete.
Week 10- Finish editing the first five pages of the magazine, and move on to the last five pages.
Week 11- Finish up editing the last five pages.
Week 12- Add final touches.