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Adele Vogue Cover Analysis

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Adele Atkins graced the cover of Vogue’s October 2011 edition in light of the release of her newest album, 21. The young, successful singer uses the worldwide publicity of featuring in a magazine- particularly the front cover- as a factor in her promotional campaign. Her appearance on the magazine’s front cover will have increased sales for both her newest LP and Vogue magazine itself; this is due to the singer and magazine having similar demographics. This target audience (or demographic) is a young to middle-aged woman, most commonly between socio-economic class B-D.

Vogue is an extremely popular lifestyle and high-end fashion magazine which focuses on the latest trends and often features articles of up-and-coming artists (and fashion icons), like Adele. The stylish nature of Vogue- literally meaning popular fashion- is showed in its masthead where a serif typeface has been used to depict class. The serif font used for the subtext in the puffs also evidences the ‘chic’ way Vogue presents itself.

A medium to close-up shot of Adele has been used, which is both artistic and easily recognisable as the singer; she is also looking directly into the camera lens. This direct mode of address is used to establish a personal connection between Adele and the reader. This is a common convention of Vogue magazine- and most magazines in the fashion and lifestyle genre- as it can play a factor in persuading a potential reader to buy the magazine once combined with Adele’s level of fame. This image of Adele is also the only picture used on the cover, displaying her importance and appeal toward Vogue’s main audience.

Predominantly blue and orange have been used on the front cover of this edition, mostly because they are contrasting colours which are often used to draw attention to a magazine. Although blue if often associated with a more male demographic, the softer shade of blue of Adele’s dress, which is reflected in the background, has stronger connotations of calm and depth, which are major themes in Adele’s music. White has been used for the puffs as a contrast to the darker blue background.

Adele’s makeup is neutral reflecting the how the singer is not trying to be ground-breaking or elaborate; she would rather portray a more feminine and sophisticated woman than an artist using bright colours in their promotional campaigns to draw attention. Adele is dressed in a fashionable way, due to the high-end nature of Vogue which is also appealing to a female demographic keen to find out what Adele is wearing in the magazine editorial. The lack of bright colours attracts an older audience.

Furthermore, the anchorage text used, (‘Adoring Adele’) gives the impression the article will include remarks about Adele’s personal life as this breaks down the ‘celebrity’ persona which places a wall between the artist and the reader- this also relates to how Adele looks directly into the camera as if to address the reader.

In turn, the anchorage text underneath, ‘Hometown girl goes global’, whilst cleverly using play-on-words by linking the line to one of Adele’s first singles ‘Hometown Glory’, demonstrated how Adele is keen to show that anyone can become a sensation globally, like she has. The artist has always been eager to make references to her hometown often in her music and this is reflected in this subtitle chosen.

Persuading a potential reader into buying the magazine, buzz words have been used including ‘man of the moment’ and ‘essentials’. These word choices are effective in forcing the reader to believe that they need the product featured as it is classified as an ‘essential’ by Vogue.

Rolling in the Deep- Music Video Analysis

Winner of three prestigious 2012 Grammy Awards including Song of the Year, ‘Rolling in the Deep’ has arguably become Adele’s signature song. Having been recently certified as the highest selling digital song by a female artist, the song’s accompanying video has been watched over a quarter of a billion times on YouTube. Receiving seven MTV Video Music Award nominations, the ‘Rolling in the Deep’ video has become Adele’s most critically acclaimed yet.

Although not as clear as other music videos, ‘Rolling in the Deep’ is a narrative video, where the story is conveyed through use of stark metaphors. However, there are also performance aspects as Adele is seated, miming throughout the video. The song represents a love between Adele and her ex-partner that, through turmoil and many heated arguments, has shattered to pieces and this is demonstrated during the video where metaphors can be generated from each individual shot.

The video begins with Adele seated; the mise-en-scene is extremely dull featuring only neutral colours with a heavy contrast between the black of Adele’s dress and the white background. The fact that Adele is seated throughout the video could symbolise defiance which is one of the issues faced in the song. She could also be seated as to focus the entirety of the music video on her voice instead of her appearance or (lack of) dance. Adele is dressed in a sophisticated way, showing the growth and change from her previous album 19; the singer’s clothing in the Vogue front cover also reinforces how Adele has matured both appearance-wise and musically.

Furthermore, the constant use of black and white colours demonstrates connotations of a fight between good/evil- relating to the message of the song. Like the metaphorical way to show defiance, there are other metaphors scattered obviously throughout the video. For example, the repetitive breaking of plates could connote how often Adele fought with her partner: each plate representing a different fight.

‘Rolling in the Deep’ also depicts a dancer dressed in a Samurai costume, distorting the air with a substance like powder. This blotching of the air could metaphorically represent the deformity in her relationship; how she cannot see clearly where the relationship is going.

Becoming a more commonly used convention in modern music videos, artists often depict the story they are telling throughout their song via use of stark metaphors during their video. The visuals used in ‘Rolling in the Deep’ are often metaphorical and not strictly blatant, although are often used to reinforce, magnify and reiterate the lyrical meaning.

Flowing with the heavy drumbeat of the song, the (most commonly midshot) shots change rapidly in time with the beat. This form of editing is common in narrative videos because it is emotive; as the song’s beat and tempo changes the editing reflects this. The editing is fastest during the chorus, where the beat is fastest.

Because Adele is the central figure featured, her shots are often close-ups so the singer is easily recognisable. The camera is mostly sturdy and panning shots are rarely used. However, as most of the shots focusing on Adele are close-ups, panning shots are used when retreating from the singer to show the full set, further emphasising how alone Adele is.

Like in her Vogue magazine editorial, Adele is portrayed as a young, sophisticated and relatable lady dressed in simplistic black attire in the video.

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