10 Editorial Illustrations for Magazines

An editorial illustration is a supplementary piece to a certain form of content. Historically, editorials are caricatures that accompany political satires on newspapers. These days, editorial illustrations have gone beyond the world of politics; and can be just as savvy and artistic as the articles they cover in magazines.

Editorial illustrations add a new dimension to an article its reader wouldn’t have been able to grasp sans visuals. They intrigue, inspire, and inform of abstract concepts that can’t be fully grasped through text alone. More importantly, they keep readers hooked on your article. If you’re working on your own illustrations, be inspired by some of the best and contemporary editorial illustrations we’ve got listed.

Classical Collage

Source: Nate Kitch

The fusion of traditional photography and digital illustration will never go out of style. It’s a classic approach in editorial illustrations that effectively combines tangible ideas with abstract concepts. The way this illustration uses black and white photography with vivid digital elements makes what is most likely a subliminal message more comical.

Designing with Depth

Source: Tom Haugomat

Tom Haugomat

This editorial illustration has a more cinematic quality in design. The style of one’s editorial illustration is intertwined with the message of the text or article. It’s important for the illustration to set the mood for the reader through visuals to have a better understanding of the article’s point of view. This illustration is a perfect example of that.

Art is Hard (Work)

Source: Essi Kimpimaki

Essi Kimpimaki

More than just talent, being a successful artists require perseverance. This editorial illustration expresses that sentiment with eye-catching tropical designs. It gives off just enough quirk and personality to let you know you’re in for a good read.

The Wolf and Tree

Source: Behance.com

Colors play an important role in revealing the relevance of an image or illustration. One of the more contemporary approaches in editorial illustration is best expressed by this Wolf and Tree editorial. The use of opalescent gradients and vibrant colors that don’t strain the eyes is a challenging and advanced method a designer rarely takes, but should pursue.

End of the Digital Native

Source: Doug Chakya

Doug Chakya

An animated GIF is such a welcome change in the field of editorial illustration and digital advertising. There are plenty of digital magazines that opt for GIFs to entertain and entice their readers. This End of the Digital Native, for example, represents the generation gap and clash of cultures that may arise from the way parents monitor their kids’ use of technology.

A Day at the Beach

Source: Beth Warland

You may also create fun editorial illustrations for different kinds of scenery. This scenic illustration of a busy day at the beach shows off a culturally-relevant design, while being fun and expressive. The design may have a lot of elements, but it manages to keep the whole look clean and clutter-free.

An Olympic Catastrophe

Source: behance.net

behance.net

An Olympic Catastrophe may be the name of the article this editorial illustration based the design on; but there’s nothing catastrophic about this illustration. It’s a refreshing and completely modern approach to an editorial illustration that keeps up with the formality of its content article.

An Eye for Design

Source: behance.net

behance.net

Some articles are too straightforward that their illustrations tend to be more abstract to balance it out. This An Eye for Design editorial illustration provides the reader a glimpse of that message through his abstract and bizarre approach to design.

Tropical Awakening

Source: behance.net

behance.net

This editorial illustration is an exploration of the mind where the artist’s thoughts and emotions are best expressed in shapes, colors, and nature. The beauty of making editorial illustrations for a personal portfolio is that the limits are set by you alone. Be expressive and timeless with your personal style.

Escaping Reality

Source: behance.net

behance.net

Everyone dreams of escaping reality once in a while. This illustration depicts the notion of such a concept with this modern and digitally-inclined editorial. Escaping Reality shows the world expanding right before your very eyes, and through your computer screens.

Editorial illustrations give perspective to magazine articles. They provide a sense of depth; and make abstract and complex ideas more tangible for the reader. They grab the attention and is an important element in keeping people engaged on an article. Be inspired by these editorial illustration designs and see how they can be of use to you in your own works.