Rolling Stone Magazine Design & Branding ANNIVERSARY ISSUE, ROLLING STONE by J. Walter Thompson Mumbai

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Industry Magazines
Media Design & Branding
Market India
Agency J. Walter Thompson Mumbai
Released March 2011

Credits & Description

Category: Publications & Business Communications
Agency: JWT
Date of First Appearance: Mar 5 2011
Entrant Company: JWT, Mumbai, INDIA
Entry URL:
Vice President & Sr Creative Director: Debu Purkayastha (JWT)
Media placement: Magazine - Book Stores & Magazine Stalls - 5 March 2011-15 April 2011

Describe the brief from the client
Besides outstanding journalism, Rolling Stone magazine, since its launch in 1967, have always
stood out for its trail blazing covers. They have consistently stood out for innovative visual
treatment and pioneering design. In many respects Rolling Stone covers have over the last four
decades changed the way readers look at print magazines.

In keeping with this spirit, the 3rd Anniversary issue of Rolling Stone India, was due in March.
This issue was primarily devoted to a project called Rolling Stone Cover as Art . They gave a free hand to interpret my version of the Rolling Stone cover.

Describe the challenges and key objectives
The task was tough, especially when the brief is open!

There were the usual cliches you come up with when you think India and music. Kitsch is usually the first thing that is jumps up and has been over used, I wanted it to far away from all of that.

Rolling Stone has been my design inspiration for years and I wanted the design to have my signature yet be universal in its appeal. After many drawings i settled on the 'CELEBRATION' as a theme.

The 'HEART BURST' of Indian motifs was at the center of the celebration!

Describe how you arrived at the final design
This design merely attempts to capture the essence of this celebration of music.
It's a veritable explosion of people and things in a state of absolute exhilaration.
People and thingys dancing and rejoicing. Joined in equal measure even by stars and hearts.
In the middle of all of this is a 'heart burst' of Indian motifs; very much a part of the celebrations.

The words "HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROLLING STONE" are engraved as a part of this collage of celebration.

The design had to be my style and my rendition and I kept it simple!

Give some indication of how successful the outcome was in the market
It is the 3rd anniversary of Rolling Stone and it was a riot out there.
The magazine was disappearing from the stands fast and how!

The issue was widely appreciated by music lovers, subscribers and some prominent musicians.
Emails and phone calls flooded the Rolling Stone team. Some newstands had run out of copies and had to request for more issues.

Overall it was a great hit and a success.