Finding inspiration for new designs is a challenge at times. Whether you’re creating a new website page or an actual print magazine, studying a magazine mockup is one way to tap into the creative mood of others and inspire your own unique designs.
If you want to reach the current generation, you’ll need to find things that are hip and exciting. Even promotional products are trending toward high tech with bright, youthful colors. We can see this in magazine advertising, as well, where ads sometimes interact with smartphones via a QR code or by encouraging consumers to visit a site.
People seem to remember things they see in print more than things they see online. In one study, people had a 70 percent recall of printed advertisements versus 40 percent for digital ads.
Your next design needs to factor in what works for the target audience you’re trying to reach and what’s currently available out there. Even if you’re designing for online, you can learn a lot by studying print mockups. Take a look at these 16 print magazine mockup ideas to find inspiration for your next design.
Ads that take up a full spread in a magazine tend to be quite memorable. For one thing, they are hard to ignore when they take up every inch of available space. This A4 Landscape mockup is one example. Note how the fold is treated in this magazine mockup — the spread is treated as a single page. This won’t work with every image, but it will with some.
The Ultra Clean magazine mockup is free to use and has a light, simple design that works well for almost any magazine type. If you want the focus to be on your content, then this is the type of design to go with. The photos should work well in 4K displays because they are high resolution. The creator says you can easily tweak the design for A4 or US Letter sizes.
Although not technically a magazine mock-up, this Harper’s Bazaar example is a good one to study. The tutorial to make your text wrap in InDesign is quite useful! In this creative layout, they take an image and then wrap the text around it. However, it requires a bit of design know-how to wrap the text just so — it isn’t a straight layout, but one that features curves.
Of course, how you wrap the text depends upon which design program you’re using, but wrapping text around a curve doesn’t have to be complicated.
Flat designs are all the rage today, so a flat design for magazines is a safe bet. Take a look at this flat design magazine layout by Hieu Nguyen Design. The leek looks as though it is laying flat and doesn’t take center stage. Instead, the main focus is on the text itself. This type of layout works particularly well for informative articles.
Adding three-dimensional elements to the cover is one way to create maximum impact. To achieve the three-dimension effect you see on the V Magazine cover above, you have to work with layers, carefully laying elements over top of one another and utilizing transparency until everything works seamlessly together.
You can use Photoshop to create a 3D effect, but this type of design is also possible in programs like InDesign. The key is to plan ahead and figure out what you want to appear on top and which elements need to be in the background. Note the pop of bright color to draw attention, too.
This letter-size magazine mockup shows the different angles of a magazine, including the cover and inside pages. This is a simple layout that you can use for almost any type of startup magazine or trade publication. Note that the mockup template shows the magazine from various angles. You just add your own colors and images to create the look you want to show a client or prospective investor.
This mockup is perfect for a fashion magazine, featuring transparent backgrounds and interior spreads that work well to show off the season’s latest finds or items from the runway. The mockup colors are soft and feminine, but you can easily change these to suit your magazine’s unique style and work with any ad of this size.
Want to present the idea for magazine photography? This cool print magazine mockup is an excellent addition to your presentation. It shows your intended cover but also gives the feel of photography with the camera and lens and a unique setting. This is a fantastic way to stir up excitement or create an ad for your debut issue.
Does your company want to build its own magazine? This company mockup is a great way to present the idea to the higher-ups or show them what you’ve accomplished so far as you work to get the magazine up and running.
This digest-sized magazine mockup is a bit unusual. Most magazines are A4 or perhaps U.S. letter size, but this mockup is perfect for artsy magazines or a collection of poems. A university or student organization is the ideal place to utilize this mockup.
This print work mockup allows you to feature some of the most beautiful photos in your collection. Note that there are three separate mockup types in this package — the format is the familiar PSD. One mockup is made up of a close-up scene, and two are standard view scenes. You can change background textures in Smart Object layers.
Do you want to create something that will reside in upscale waiting rooms or become coffee table décor? A square magazine is still unique enough to warrant such attention. Check out the free mockup for a square magazine design over at Behance.
This modern grid design pulls in elements from both digital and print advertising, proving you can cross mediums and remain relevant. Create a design around a grid system for a modern, sleek look.
Do you need to create a design that features realistic-looking images? This mockup puts the spotlight on the photos in the background with minimal emphasis on the text. The photorealistic template works well when you need to present an idea that is image-heavy.
A mockup for an A5 size magazine isn’t always easy to find. A4 seems to be the standard, so anything slightly different than the standard is rare. However, an A5 mockup gives your design a unique look and grabs your readers’ attention.
Do you need to create a business proposal more so than a consumer magazine? Check out this company proposal mockup and template for your needs. The lines are clean and professional, and the layout is simple with an index in the front.
The 16 mockups in this article should inspire you to create a design that is innovative and unique. In addition to studying mockups and digital magazines, take the time to thumb through a few print magazines to get ideas for new ads and layouts to see what works for you and your clients.