Chris George, Editor of Future Publishing's newly-launched N-Photo magazine, gives us 60 seconds of his time and reveals what really goes on at celebrity photo shoots.
How did you become an Editor?
My first taste of editing was running Palatinate – the student newspaper at Durham University. It was the experience that convinced me I wanted to become a journalist. I came an Editor for a living in 1989, running a magazine called What Camera for IPC.
Favourite mag growing up?
The Beezer when I was a kid. I got into photography seriously in my late teens, and my favourite photo mag was a French title called Photo, which I still buy occasionally.
I left university and got a job working as an editorial assistant on Scrip World Pharmaceutical News. It came out twice a week and was great training in getting magazines out on time. It lives on as an online news service in the Informa group.
I’ve worked with some great people over the years, so hard to pick out one. Bruce Black was my Deputy at Camera Weekly, when I was at Haymarket. He was a great motivator. His magazine management mantra was that you could always work to make an article better and still hit the deadline.
Your most interesting interview?
I did a cover shoot with Linda Lusardi once – and have a picture of me up a ladder in the studio dropping leaves on her head. I also persuaded Red Dwarf star Robert Llewellyn to dress as Santa for a Christmas cover when editing Video Camera at IPC.
Editing a magazine is a whole lot easier if you feel passionate about the subject you are covering. Readers will spot it if you have to fake enthusiasm.
What’s your career highlight?
If you are only as good as the last article or magazine that you produced, I would be very happy to be judged on the basis of the first issue of N-Photo.
Most embarrassing moment?
Losing a box full of lenses we were reviewing for a group test when launching PhotoPlus. I had to source replacements for the lot. The missing lenses turned up three weeks later, when we finally worked out a courier had picked up the wrong box from reception.
What advice would you give to aspiring Editors?
I’ve written about all sorts of subjects – but editing a magazine is a whole lot easier if you feel passionate about the subject you are covering. Readers will spot it if you have to fake enthusiasm.
What makes your magazine unique?
N-Photo is the first newsstand photo magazine aimed exclusively at people who use Nikon digital SLRs. It builds on the success of PhotoPlus, which is aimed at Canon D-SLR owners – which I helped launch at Future in 1997.
How has the competitor landscape changed in the last decade?
The arrival of affordable digital SLRs five or so years ago has created a renaissance in interest in creative photography – and this has led to there being more magazine titles than ever before.
Most innovative thing you and the team have come up with?
Every issue we provide a free cover-mounted video disc. Unlike some other titles this isn’t full of voice-over videos on Photoshop. Instead we provide live-action videos – where the team and I explain a technique or camera control in front of your eyes. It is a great complement to the skills-based content in the magazine itself.
How is your title adapting to new innovations in delivering content?
This is the most digital-savvy magazine I have ever worked on. We have managed to chalk up over 37,000 Likes on Facebook before even a single copy went on sale – more than any of our established rivals. The growth in digital edition sales provides huge potential to N-Photo – as Nikon users the world over are already excited about a magazine that is 100% catered to their needs.
Your fantasy front cover?
A lenticular cover celebrating our 100th issue. Just 99 issues to go, and a few negotiations with the publisher, and the dream will come true!