They say that print is dead. And, that might be true for your mum’s glossy mags. ABC reported back in 2016 that many standard glossy magazines are struggling due to advertising cuts and high overheads. There is a new wave of magazines coming into the spotlight, though: the indies. Independent magazines differ from the print giants of yesteryear. They don’t print on glossy paper, and they don’t favour advertising over content. The surge of magazines from independent publishers has trickled into every niche from fashion to art to surf culture. People are flocking to these publications despite their usually higher than average cover prices. Perhaps it’s because they offer an experience that you just can’t get anywhere else – an immersive happening that you won’t get by looking at your phone screen.
These types of print magazines are up-and-coming around the world but Australian titles in the forefront. Aussies are producing publications that are being sold around the world and gaining global acclaim. Below we’ve rounded up some of our favourite Australian indie magazines for the discerning reader.
Smith Journal – Melbourne, VIC
Read for: stories that you won’t find anywhere else told by someone you feel like you’ve known for years.
Smith Journal is brought to you by the publishers behind Frankie magazine. If Frankie is the popular girl with flowers in her hair, Smith is the one on the sidelines listening to some underground band you’ve never heard of. The folks at Smith Journal seek out the weird and wonderful and whimsical. The magazine is witty, sharp, and captivating.
Dumbo Feather – Melbourne, VIC
Read for: inspiring stories of people working to change the world on sturdy, environmentally-friendly paper.
Dumbo Feather tells the stories of extraordinary people from around the world. Think: people who have created their dream jobs, people who have overcome huge obstacles, and people who are working towards creating a better future for all of us. Editor Nathan Scolaro told Mediaweek, “It’s not the despairing, negative media feed that we are used to. You can choose to focus on the doom and gloom or you can focus on the good that’s happening in the world.”
“You can choose to focus on the doom and gloom or you can focus on the good that’s happening in the world”
New Philosopher – Hobart, TAS
Read for: intriguing and novel ideas about the world’s most forefront issues and thought-provoking pieces to help you out of (or in to) your existential dread.
This indie mag showcases thinkers both new and old. It delves into classic philosophical conundrums and it also looks at new issues through a philosophical lens. New Philosopher covers some deep topics, but somehow finds a way to help them relate to the masses. Anyone from academic-Plato-lovers to everyday citizens can enjoy the content within these pages.
Peppermint Magazine – Brisbane, QLD
Read for: fun recipes, DIY projects, advice on sustainable fashion and slow living, and overall uplifting vibes.
Peppermint mag covers serious issues like sustainability and human rights but manages to still feel inviting. Reading this indie leaves me feeling empowered and creative. Each issue usually includes helpful freebies like downloadable sewing patterns, and Peppermint makes a habit of showcasing those who are doing good in the world.
Green Magazine – Melbourne, VIC
Read for: stunning and unique architecture and interiors with a focus on sustainability.
If you’re always dreaming about remodelling your home and constantly pinning minimalistic interiors on Pinterest, Green Magazine is for you. They talk about design and architecture for a greener world. Their use of luscious and luxurious photos will have you going off grid and building your own tiny house in no time.