Circling back to print, do you think it could ever go out of business?
I listened to a podcast called The Stack by Monocle about print medium. There’s been a huge surge of self-published print medium in the last few years. There is an abundance of magazines being produced that are self-published and self-funded, so it’s really about people creating them out of passion, rather than money. I think you have a lot more genuinely interesting ideas with no restrictions. Lots of online platforms are doing print editions too because people still like to have tactile objects.
I have stacks on top of stacks in my apartment; I’m a huge fan.
It’s always nice to go back to things, to keep things. Everyone’s going back to analog attitudes. In London, everyone’s really into ceramics, my friends and I all go to a life drawing class. People – at least in my little pocket of London—are getting back into doing things with their hands. Staring at a screen all day you stop feeling human. I didn’t sew for years, and I just bought a sewing machine again. We forget why we got into it in the first place! I think the resurgence of printed magazines, vinyl music, analog photography all show we are moving back in that direction.
Do you think print will ever go out of business?
No, no, no.
Digital is fantastic, but print is… it’s something that you can hold in your hand and keep forever. It’s extraordinarily important that it stays. There is something beautiful about print, something precious that you cannot feel with digital.
I feel like when it’s in print you’re going to invest a block of time to look at the images and dive into them whereas with Instagram you pull it up when you’re already distracted, and you might spend 5 seconds looking at an image.
And when you're thinking of a certain time period or a certain thing that happened in 2006 with Balenciaga, you can pull a magazine from that time and look for it.
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
I noticed that I have visual references in magazines as well. For example every year, you know, Vogue Paris does a collaboration with someone for an issue. They are super good, the old ones like Hitchcock or Polanski are so amazing, more recently I love the Sofia Coppola one as well. I always go back to look at those old issues.
I mean that’s definitely hard, but I think digital is becoming more and more prominent. I would say the emergence of tech in fashion is the way of the future. And this past fashion week with all the see-now- buy-now collections, that’s definitely where it’s going. “I see it now, I want to have it now,” like that kind of mindset is becoming so important. I mean with Instagram you can see it right away. Everything is being force-fed to you and in fashion in particular; you can feel like you're right there. I think accessibility and high demand has a big impact on the industry.
Bringing down the barriers?
Yeah it’s becoming such a big theme. I mean tech in fashion is huge. I just feel like magazines are having to adapt with the times and that’s why unfortunately there have been some magazines folding, changing some or adapting. I think it’s only natural with time for magazines to have to move forward and maybe downsize print but amp up their web team and things like that.
Personally, I think there will always be a market for print magazines. Yes, much of it is shifting online but for myself, online is incomparable to being able to hold a magazine in your hands and turning those thick matte-pages. I’m also a hoarder and have accumulated quite a collection that I’d like to keep expanding. I think there should be a stronger selection of content and no roll over in terms of what is going online/in-mag. This would make readers more likely to buy issues as the content in-mag would be totally separate from content online.
What changes do you think magazines need to make to survive in a digital world?
I think there should be a stronger selection of content and no roll over in terms of what is going online/in-mag. This would make readers more likely to buy issues as the content in-mag would be totally separate from content online.
Going into the world of magazines at a time that each day is becoming more digital is scary. I think about this everyday, I will wake up to it at night in bed, thinking if I am making a mistake. But I firmly do believe that magazines will never go out of print. I think that our generation is just at a digital obsessed phase, but it will pass and people will soon come back more to print. This happened with records and CDs, when the iPod came out, and now it’s considered trendy to collect records. Staring at screens for hours is so unhealthy too, so I think people will always have the need for print. However, this digital craze has made people so impatient, because they’re so used to scrolling through their social media feeds, flipping through channels at the push of a button, and ordering things online, that it has also made us a lazy generation, which is also why so many people don’t read anymore or even take the time to look at a beautiful photograph. So I think for the future, magazines should focus more on the art of the industry, featuring more editorial spreads and articles, almost like a portable coffee table book, rather than what it is now: 90% advertisements.