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Make a magazine cover and its contents page extensions of each other.
Let the cover highlight a main story or two. Then, through some typographic and image similarities, visually connect the two. Together, they make a much more useful and powerful tool for an audience than one or the other on its own. Most importantly, don't hide the contents page. Clearly, they should be in close proximity to each other to best share the goal of helping readers find what they need. A contents page that folds out from the front cover or one that appears on the first inside page are the best options.
         There's an old saying that asserts, half measures avail us nothing. I'll add that in the periodical business, there's more than enough need for creative problem solving to go around. Even if we each keep exclusively busy with our own designated function. And certainly, when a promising thought about anything occurs to anyone, it should be shared and considered for potential merit.
         This sample is a direct descendant of format notes made very early in the process. Complete with ideas about available picture sources, lavish photo montages, custom designed headlines for feature articles and a writing style that includes double entendre were all to be included. With a cruiseliner named "Grandeur", this resulting spread's answer to the original creative direction couldn't be grander.

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