For a glimpse at the changing face of poetry, cast aside the dusty anthology and make room for the 21st century’s answer to an ancient art form—Popshot Magazine. Created in 2008, the British-based print magazine is now the flag-bearer for a new generation of creative writers and illustrators.
The London-based outlet calls upon poets to write original, thought-provoking pieces of work based on a set theme. Inundated with thousands of submissions for each issue, the Popshot team performs the arduous task of picking just a handful of poems for publication. Those selected are then sent to a group of 20 illustrators who create an image to match the text. Jacob Denno, the mastermind behind Popshot, calls this process a “conversation” between the two art forms, stating that “poems give reason for the illustrations to exist and vice versa.” This allows readers to engage with ideas that may have otherwise gone unexplored and creates a beautiful balance of text and image—all crammed into 64 pages of uncoated 115 gsm, which gives the magazine an organic and earthy feel.
The next issue of the biannual publication, “Birth,” is set to drop in October, and will mark a rebrand for the magazine after seven issues. In addition to a new logo, website and composition, Popshot will also be taking short story and flash fiction submissions to accompany the poetry that has come to define the magazine.
“There’s one poem in particular that blows my mind every time I read it and a few short stories that are frankly bizarre,” says Denno of the upcoming edition. “One of them tells the story of a man who falls down a hole and spends the rest of his life falling. He meets his wife, they have children, set up home, and live life in a permanent state of free-fall. I won’t tell you how it ends although you might be able to guess.”
In going to such great lengths to drag poetry and prose into the modern age, Popshot is handing the art of writing back to the masses in the form of a stunning publication. Popshot Magazine can be found through a select number of international stockists and online, with two-year subscriptions running £19 in the UK, £26 in the rest of Europe and £32 elsewhere worldwide.