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Work / Publication

Behind the Scenes: We speak to Editor in Chief of Riposte about the fabulous upcoming issue

Jeez, Riposte is so good. For their debut issue that magical thing happened where it took a while to spread the word, but just as it was about to sell out suddenly people got wind of how incredible it was and there was a huge clamour for copies. Focusing on powerful women in the creative industry, the magazine is a charming, informed look at some of the most uniquely smart people in the world – not to mention beautifully designed by Shaz Madani. This issue features legends such as Deborah Sussman, rapper Lizzo, writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and filmmakers Natalia Leite and Alexandra Roxo of Purple Milk. You can pre-order the second issue over here, and I advise you don’t waste much time in doing so.

We spoke to Danielle Pender, Editor in Chief of Riposte, about the exciting aspects of making a second issue, and what’s in store for us this time around…

How is this issue of Riposte different from the debut? 

It’s only our second issue and we’re still developing our audience so we haven’t changed it drastically. It has the same ethos and features amazing women, but it’s a little more considered. We have commissioned the vast majority of the visual content and worked closely with some really talented photographers and image-makers and we’ve changed our stock to take the stiffness out of it and make it more tactile. Also the content is a lot more global than the first issue. We feature brilliant women from across the Middle East and North Africa, Bogota, America, Nigeria and closer to home in Europe.

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Riposte Issue #2

Did anything you learnt from issue one contribute to the make up of issue two?

Yes, with our first issue, in some cases, we were at the mercy of what images we could get as some people didn’t know what we were about, with our second issue we have commissioned a lot more of the imagery we used. This was a consideration from the very start of the issue #2 editorial conception. Once we selected the content topic we immediately talked about how it was going to look and who we wanted to try and work with to bring it all to life. We were a lot more selective this time around.

This was very key with the music feature (“Money Talks” – who is making money in the music industry in the digital age) and an essay on women in publishing in the Middle East. We wanted to work with set designers so we commissioned Anna Lomax to create 3D infographics for the music feature and Sarah Parker who created a stunning set for the Middle East essay. Both were shot by Catherine Losing and we were super-happy with final images.

How did you go about selecting the content for this issue? 

We have still veered away from having an explicit theme for the issue but there is a common thread with a lot of the women and articles we feature in that they challenges stereotypes and expectations.

Writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie talks about the importance of telling different narratives about a place or race of people to avoid perpetuating stereotypes and misunderstandings; this is also a concern of Damien Poulain and his POV Female project which is one of our features.

Daisy Ginsberg challenges expectations of what designers can create in her work with synthetic aesthetics (she explores how designers and biologists can work together to solve future problems) and we dedicate another feature to the work of Sister Corita – a screen-printing nun who challenged the stereotype of what a nun can and should achieve.

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Riposte Issue #2

What’s your personal favourite part of Riposte Issue #2?


I don’t have a particular favourite as I like elements of each piece but I do have a real soft spot for the insert. It’s dedicated to the poetry of Amy Key and features illustrations accompanying each poem Giada Ganassin. It’s a nice change of pace in the magazine and I love Amy’s writing. It’s really startling and honest and doesn’t try to trick you with complicated language or structure. We had a few issues with the images to begin but then we found Giada and I think her images set it off beautifully.

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Riposte Issue #2