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Point 51 magazine review

It’s always refreshing to come across an outlet of news like Point 51 – an actual printed magazine.  There are few times when you find something that peaks your interest and want to share with others.

Issue 4 cover (by Point 51)

After coming across Point 51 magazine I was ordering further copies within days.  Many months later this got me thinking perhaps it was time to write about it.  I have to say what lies in front of you is my opinion too, I’m not paid to say this and no form of referral or affiliate links either.

What is it?

It’s probably a good idea to tell you a little about the magazine first. It’s a news based magazine with long articles and supporting images. But let’s start by telling you a few basics about it:

  • No adverts
  • Independently made
  • clear font + design
  • great photographs
  • Long form articles
  • About EU/UK
  • It’s £12
  • Approx 130 pages
  • Half yearly

There we go a few facts for you, i never said it would be useful information.  But my viewpoint for choosing a reading resource comes down to simple things. Let’s go through a few of these points.

Advertisements

Another amazing element – there are NO ADVERTS (yes I had to write this in capitals).  It is so nice to not be distracted by irrelevant product placements. This is not a dig at the advertising industry or other magazines, it’s just my opinion. For instance I love “Wired” magazine for the science journalism, but the advertisements really annoy me.

Lack of advertising (image by Point 51)

It’s my opinion this is a very honourable approach and more importantly they can fund the magazine without influence or distraction.   

Independant

It is so nice to find something that is not made by the large publishing houses – because of a few things (bear with me). So firstly you can actually talk to the people behind the scene as they are small enough to care and respond.  It’s their magazine and will answer you as it’s their job, their life and something they care for (keep reading). You won’t get that same level of interaction with others.

Example article (image by Point 51)

This also means they can choose what goes in the magazine, they work with who they want and whatever stories they need to. From speaking with the editor Rob Pinney their are assignments and pitches for ideas. It doesn’t revolve around rushing out articles and being in your face.  There journalists get the real story by spending time with the people.

Design

Some of you may not care about the feel or design in terms of fonts choices, heights, pictures and frames but it really matters to me.  Time, fashion and the medium all affect how a magazine should look.  Personally I think they have done an amazing job with the design (hope you are still with me).

You see long form articles need to have a clear font to make it easy to read, it has to be large enough so you don’t lose yourself and get distracted.  The framing of the writing with the photographs are very relevant too.  The magazine uses the clear design of columns across the pages, that are sometimes split with an occasional quote too.

Simple design with quote (images by Point 51)

Perhaps I’m just a font addict, but it’s simplicity and a wise choice of colour too.  You see red has a power over us, you probably haven’t thought about it until you get in to photography. I’m just just talking about red sport cars or a red dress or red fruit either.  The colour has been used throughout history for danger, some its passion with a heart others it might be blood or family.  See where I was leading you – red is a very good choice and totally suits the magazine.

Content

Stories are from the UK and Europe, each issue contains a list of the stories with the journalist/photographers involved so you can easily jump to what peaks your interest.  Releasing on a half yearly cycle means they don’t need to rush content to keep up with the madness of the world. They can plan and take their time to write something more insightful or researched.  You will hear examples of this thought process during my interview with Rob Pinney (the editor).

Example pages (images by Point 51)

When I first started reading I was drawn to an article about a steel town and it’s changing landscape.  Coming from a similar background this captured my interest and couldn’t put it down.  From there on it was really nice to read about the rest of our continent.

If we look at issue 4 as an example there are 7 articles in total over 134 pages and their could easily be over a dozen images per story. Hopefully that gives you an idea of what to expect.

Price point

They have come in at a great price (£12) considering this included postage to the UK too. Remember it’s self funded with no advertising and approx 130 pages so plenty of content.

Another thing to note here and worth shouting out to prospective photographers – they pay for their content!  This is another element of what I feel is correct, it’s important and often neglected.

Example bundle (image by Point 51)

For those interested in buying the magazine, they also have bundles of 2 issues at £20.

Find out more

In fact I was so pleased with the magazine articles I managed to talk with Rob on my podcast.  But also I asked if it was possible to reach out to some of the team. This led me to Nick St Oegger coming on the podcast too and discuss his lovely editorial on Albania.   

These interviews with provide you with behind the scenes information, so you can hear from an editor’s perspective and what it’s like working for them as a photographer/journalist. Podcasting has provided me with this amazing resource of friendships and I’m so grateful to remain friends with Rob and Nick.

Summary

What is there to say, have you bought a copy yet? I hope this article doesn’t come across a sales pitch as it was not intended this way. Each time I put pen to paper (well keyboard to digital notepad) I’m very conscious to write my personal opinion. You can’t buy people like me, you can try and influence me but it won’t work.  My reason to write about this magazine is because I enjoy the content, it’s a reasonable price and they are great people.

Example article (image by Point 51)

So if you like reading news in a longer style, free from adverts and like decent photography, maybe you should try it.  I need to thank Rob Pinney (the editor) for remaining in touch and providing the images for this article.

Head over to point 51 now – https://point51magazine.com/ and say hello from me, your friendly blogger.