8:02pm Sunday 6th January 2013
What better way to start the year than getting into a new hobbie! Perhaps you've been thinking about photography?Well, the first edition of the brand new photography magazine WHAT HYPE has recently been released! I caught up with the young, charismatic editor, William Dalton who holds traditional values on printing and individual views on photography.
Caroline (interviewer): What is WHAT HYPE?
Will: WHAT HYPE is a small, independent photography magazine I founded last year. The concept behind WHAT HYPE is to create an art magazine that is simple and honest; it’s not a big publication with columnists and interviews and all sorts of filler, it’s a down-to-earth collection of great photography. It’s a very different approach to publishing from other indie magazines on the internet. We invite young photographers from around the world to submit a photoset for each issue’s theme - last issue the theme was ‘Night’. WHAT HYPE comes out every three months, and our first issue was released in December 2012.
Caroline: What inspired you to make the magazine?
Will: The inspiration behind the magazine, like inspiration for many new products, came with being fed up of the current market offerings. Indie ‘zines’ on the internet are plentiful, but most are flawed by their own ambition. They’re hundreds of pages long, full of art and photography, and long interviews, but they’re way too expensive to buy physically, and poorly curated. So they end up being simply virtual - and, as much as the media keeps insisting print is dead and digital is the way to go, I still believe in the sincerity and satisfaction in reading printed matter. Nothing can beat a magazine you can hold in your hand; it means so much more.
Another of the inspirations behind the magazine was a need I felt to create an art magazine that didn’t contain any ‘arty-farty’ stuff; any pretentious spiel. This was another flaw I saw in the virtual indie zines - look, we all love reading magazines, but if a magazine’s so pretentious you don’t understand what it’s saying, where’s the satisfaction in reading it? Someone needs to be a middleman between the out-there artists and the down-to-earth readers. There’s a page in Issue 1 inviting advertisers to place their ads in WHAT HYPE, which parodies itself - I showed it to a friend and he said it undermined the rest of the magazine’s professional attitude, but that’s exactly the point! I don’t want WHAT HYPE to be a stuck-up professional publication made by anonymous editors behind it, I want it to have a personality. That’s one of the ways I’m trying to create a down-to-earth art zine.
I tried several names before WHAT HYPE, none of which went down very well (one of the contributors threatened to pull out when he heard about one). ‘What hype’ is intended to be ironic; asking ‘what hype?’ and therefore assuming there’d be hype around the magazine’s release, and therefore creating it. But, in the end, the name of the magazine isn’t important. It’s about what the magazine stands for.
Caroline: How do you choose who’s work goes in?
Will: In future issues, I’d like to have photographers approach me to ask if they’d be part of the next issue (in fact, that has already started with issue 2), but in the first issue I asked the contributors myself. I wanted to find interesting young photographers (anyone in secondary school or a little older) instead of just inviting industry-savvy degree students. Teenagers have a lot of vision and have already developed interesting styles in their photography, which I find fascinating. In issue 1 I asked a variety of photographers, some who I have met, some who I have previously been in contact with, and some whose work I just admire. I also feature one professional per issue, as the ‘big name’.
Caroline: Why should people buy/subscribe to WHAT HYPE?
Will: There is some fantastic photography in there, and some great articles too. It’s a magazine unlike any other in its market because it’s so down-to-earth, and it’s cheap too. I developed WHAT HYPE with readers in mind because, no matter how good the art inside the magazine is, it’s my job as editor to present the content in the best way possible. That means quality printing, low prices and nice big pictures to admire. It’s a photographer’s lookbook as well as an investigation of its theme, ‘Night’, and I hope this article will get you interested in buying it, or at least in photography!
Caroline: Where do you see WHAT HYPE in 5 years time?
Will: That’s a good question! But I have no answer for that. I’d be surprised if WHAT HYPE was still running in five years’ time, but fingers crossed things go that well! My plan is to bring in more famous photographers to contribute to it, as well as expanding the online store to sell more posters, prints and photobooks from our contributors, turning WHAT HYPE from a magazine into a magazine-centred art publisher. I’d also like to get copies of WHAT HYPE in shops and art galleries. I have a few other ideas for magazines, that I hope to realise in good time, and WHAT HYPE will be the foundation for those, too.
After speaking to Will about WHAT HYPE, it was clear to me that his magazine would be a fantastic fusion of character and passion. Only after seeing the 1st edition for myself however, did I understand how much an understatement that is.
Issue 1 is now available on the online store http://whathype.tictail.com for the price of £4.50, you can also find out more about the magazine at this website http://what-hype.com.
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