Private: Today’s magazine covers designed to sell, not to shock

The Final Decline and Total Collapse of the American Magazine Cover:

[Today] there is simply a general distaste for reckless visual ideas. In the sixties, the bracing clarity of the “big idea” school of design was fresh: Lois, like Bob Gill and Robert Brownjohn and their disciples, could rightly claim to have found a position beyond style. But eventually the cadences of the big idea, the visual pun, began to seem not just brazen, but crass, with all the subtlety of an elbow in the ribs.

You can only have your rib poked so many times, and it doesn’t seem to put you in the mood to buy things. Today’s magazine ideal magazine cover is enticing, not arresting, aiming not for shock, but for seduction.

(Link via Things Magazine.)