New Zealanders love it when foreigners stroke our ego, heap praise upon us and seek out our talents. And a fairly surprising example of this phenomenon occurred recently when Critic, the student magazine of the Otago University Student Association and the country's longest-running student newspaper, completed a project with Newsweek magazine to produce the cover of its latest issue.
Newsweek, which merged with the Daily Beast in 2010 and has a circulation of 1.5 million and a readership of 14 million readers a week in America, contracted Critic to create an image for a story about whether the web is driving us mad after the cover of their 4 June issue was picked up by noted Dutch blog coverjunkie.
"Working with a title like Newsweek is a bit of a dream come true," says Critic editor Joe Stockman, who worked with designers Sam Stuchbury and Sam Clark on the project. "To get to reach so many millions of readers with one of your images is incredible."
According to a story in the Otago Daily Times, the trio recreated the cover image, took photos of a Dunedin model and got the thumbs up.
"I got an email from their creative director saying he thought it was a really powerful image and thanking us for putting in the work ... We weren't working for free, but it's not going to change our lifestyles or anything like that."
Critic prints about 5000 copies and has a readership of around 19,000 and Stockman says the image sought to "invoke the weight of societal pressure on the individual, and its fracturing effect on the psyche".