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Tue - 21 Dec 2021

Never Judge A Book By It’s Cover…

Leave that for the magazines. In a world where print publications are vying for the ever-decreasing newsstand sales, having a noteworthy cover is more important than ever.

Serving to not only capture the casual passerby but also the publication’s subscribers, the art of the modern magazine cover is exactly that. Not only does it have to appeal on a 1-2-1 level aesthetically saying ‘buy me, you want to read what’s inside’, but also have the capacity to cut through into the digital world, with social media being the zeitgeist.

The talent booking teams have been busy over 2021, ensuring that the brightest stars are gracing their covers. Here are a few of our favourites.

Lewis Scorey | Account Executive

Dominic Calvert-Lewin on Arena Homme +

It is quite rare for a footballer to be such a forward-thinking fashion icon, but off the pitch Dominic Calvert-Lewin has always had a strong interest in fashion and the freedom of self-expression it gives him. He has previously been spotted with fellow Evertonian Tom Davies at New York Fashion Week, as well as showing off his slick, velvet suits and feminine Chanel bags on Instagram with zero f’s given to what others think. In a sport draped in toxic masculinity, a daring and androgynous cover like this one has to be a positive step in breaking down barriers for people not just in the sport but also in society who struggle with their own gender identity.

He wears a black, Prada flared short (which purposely looks like a skirt) suit with a glitzy crossbody bag on the latest cover of Arena Homme +, styled by none other than Harry Lambert. A match made in heaven and one that takes him from the back page to the front cover. DCL has sauce!

Kim Dillard | Senior Publicist

I wanted to select covers that are the modern representation of what success and beauty looks like today; what it’s always looked like but now we are demanding our seat at the table because the beauty and talent have always been there, but the access has not.

Rihanna, Essence Jan/February 2021.

I think that this was a foreshadowing of the news of her becoming a billionaire. The whole editorial is so different from anything she has previously done. She had nothing to hide, but it was a big reveal. Riri is fearless and she is a queen!

Amanda Gorman, Vogue US, May 2021.

I don’t know anyone who has united so many strangers in the most divided time in our lifetime. Her way with words can evoke so much hope, joy, and optimism and also be very direct and sharp at the same time. I am predicting she will be President of the United States one day… she will run in 2036 to be exact! She is usually more conservative in her sartorial choices but Vogue stylist Gabriella Karefa-Johnson selected a beautiful range of more flowing and ethnic styles. It all suits her perfectly!

Zendaya, GQ, February 2021.

I was so surprised that they styled her in menswear. It was so opposite of the glamorous looks that she’s often featured in. Her partnership with Law Roach has broken down so many walls in Hollywood and in fashion as to how Black women are seen, and this command’s so much respect. She is my favourite person to see on the red carpet because she really trusts him to create the absolute best and they take a lot of risks. This GQ cover shows her letting her natural glam shine with streetwear x tailoring. She is silent yet deadly! I think she will be behind the camera more in the future.

Alicia Keys & Swizz Beatz on the cover of Architectural Digest – November 2021.

“The Deans”, a lesson in manifestation. Swizz had the image of this house on his computer for 8 years, dreaming that he would one day own the “Tony Stark/ Iron Man” house. It’s very moving that from the Bronx and Hell’s Kitchen in NYC, to their wildest dreams… of owning this beautiful home. Not to mention their insane art collection! Dreams really do come true! Time to manifest! 

Laura Gale | Senior Account Manager

Rihanna, Dazed 30th Anniversary Issue

Billionaire bad gal Rihanna graced the cover of Dazed’s 30th anniversary issue, shot by one of my favourite photographer’s Rafael Pavarotti and styled by the creative genius that is Ibrahim Kamara. 

The Fenty entrepreneur slayed on a total of three jaw dropping covers, all iconic in their own right. Rihanna served us power, fashion, and intelligence! 

My favourite cover sees Rihanna stun in a custom white Burberry bikini, white trench coat and white knee-high boots. She wore her hair in her signature mullet and a pop of bright red lipstick. Holding a white cane and standing in between two men, one of whom holds an umbrella for the star, with the selling line “The Reign Never Stops,” an ode to her 2008 hit “Umbrella”. 

All hail queen Riri!!

Gareth Edwards | Associate Director

Growing up in the burbs, the local newsagent provided my earliest memories of high fashion and I would spend what money I had on issues of The Face, i-D, Dazed (and Confused back then), Sky Magazine and the super sexy Arena Homme Plus. Access to fashion was rare, although times have changed, the power of the cover has not.

The cover particularly with fashion magazines communicates not only the editor’s vision for the title, but gives the reader that small insight into the contents, in the digi era the pick up:pass up is hugely significant; with brands parting with huge sums to ensure that their wares are featured on the most important ones each season.

There have been some great covers as expected this year, with Politics taking on popularity and promotion as a way for magazines to generate interest. A strong cover can not only help sell a magazine but also has the power to educate, raise visibility, show solidarity, great ones can really communicate the now and catalogue it for future generations.

Lady Gaga, British Vogue, December 2021.

Another home run for Edward Enninful at British Vogue. 

The December 2021 issue is quite literally dripping in luxe fabulosity and I like it. Lady Gaga has had so many incarnations in a relatively short career (She is in my opinion up there with Madonna, Cher, Tina and Diana), she has become iconic over and over again, with each incarnation building her star power. This is no small feat when you consider she was zeitgeist when launching The Fame back in 2008.

In the year where Gucci has heralded many headlines, the Oscar-tipped ‘House of Gucci’ actor Gaga takes centre stage in Schiaparelli by Daniel Roseberry couture (far more interesting than the aforementioned Gucci) with Steven Meisel behind the lens. Enninful, a purveyor of the most intelligent fashion covers does what I think he does best, glamour. Deliciously 80s, from the pleated puffs of gold lame, through to the turquoise hair and high octane make-up (metallic and gloss) it is everything you could want from a December issue.  

Elliot Page, Time Magazine, March 2021.

In complete contrast to the above Gaga owns Vogue cover, I wanted to give a shout out to the Elliot Page Time Magazine cover that I believe was not styled and portrayed Page as he is. Simple trainers, unremarkable jeans/navy sweater combo speaks volumes about identity and the image feels both candid and honest.

Page is the first Transgender Guy, to be on the cover of the publication, shot by Wynne Neilly and I hope that with visibility the world will embrace people for who they are.