Leslie says he was appointed to work on the title by publisher Bauer Media in February. After leaving John Brown Media last July, Leslie worked on the redesign of fellow Bauer Media title FHM, which relaunched in February.
Leslie has worked closely with the in-house Heat design team led by art director Dan Biddulph on the project. He says the brief came in two parts – a refresh that runs through the magazine, and a relaunch of the Star Style fashion section.
Leslie says, ’The refresh was really about clarifying what’s already there. The aim was to simplify the design. Heat sits in a large market and occupies a premium position in that market.’
A spokeswoman for Bauer Media says, ’The celebrity weekly market is a fast-moving one, and full of me-too magazines. ’It’s therefore important that Heat always stands out among the competition as the premium, go-to brand for celebrity and entertainment news, and so we regularly revisit the design and layout of the magazine to keep it fresh and exciting to readers.’
Leslie says he had to come up with ’a set of tools’ for Heat’s designers to use. He adds, ’There is a little more option about how to use space, but the colours and the design vocabulary stay the same.’
The refresh has rolled out throughout the magazine over the previous three issues. The project will complete next Tuesday when the
magazine featuring the redesigned Star Style section (pictured) will hit the shelves.
Leslie says Star Style features ’a whole new visual language’ and a simplified colour palette so the colour can come from photographs used. New fonts have been introduced into the section, with Archer used as a headline font, Verlag for subheads and Chronicle for body copy.
Leslie says, ’The heart of this work has definitely been in Star Style.’ He adds, ’Heat is a magazine that has to be very flexible – the nature of the content can change massively and as a weekly it deals with almost the same level of content as a monthly.’
- Launched in 2000 and owned by Bauer Media
- Its audience is ABC1 women aged 16-35
- Bauer Media describes the typical Heat reader as ’in their mid-20s – social butterflies with a career that’s on the up’