I just had a look at the Full Circle Magazine. Looks like you all are doing a fine job -- getting a magazine off the ground isn't easy!
I've got a few critiques on design that you may find worthwhile:
- First, nice improvements over the previous issue. Less stylistic, I think, but far more printable.
- If this is something that's downloaded and printed rather than bound and mailed, you should consider your format a bit more. It looks like you may be designing with facing pages in Scribus, but I imagine most or all will be reading this one page at a time. For example, why do the numbers change sides?
- Think about using a serif font for the body text. Serifed fonts are easier to read and lack the blockiness of some sanserif fonts. The font your are using kind of blends together and sparkles a little.
- Another printing concern: I don't like the white headlines on light brown backs. Not easy to read on screen, probably not much better on paper.
- Add more white space. This is especially important if you stick with a sanserif body font. Make the gutters and margins a bit wider, and the page will look cleaner. On pages with a lot of content (e.g. 16), a lack of white space can make the page look confusing or jumbled.
- OR consider using light rule lines to help separate content. Try one down the gutter?
- Is there no masthead? If not, include your e-mail on the editorial page.
- Something about the way images are used with stories doesn't quite feel right. Maybe that's because most are around the same size? Ah. This is part: you should include a border around some images, it can be quite light, but you need to offset them from the paper. Example, Grandma photo on page 18 -- the white in the photo just goes into the page, artificially trapping white space.
- Include drop caps in some stories.
- Consider using pull quotes to highlight elements and break up text. Like on the Grandma story, a "I can't get my games to work anymore!", or somesuch.
- Make question/answer articles more obvious. Even just adding a Q. or an A. Bold doesn't cut it.
- Reconsider white headlines...not enough contrast.
- Borders around the images that fall into the page, or use consistent white space to set them off. Great designs are done either way, so give it some thought.
- More white space, especially in the gutter.
Thanks for listening to my nonsense. I think you've got a great product in the works, and I look forward to seeing it actually in print, some day! Take that, Windows Magazine! And the hundred other ones that useless O.S. has.