When he began three years ago, Manuscript editor and publisher, Mitchell Oakley Smith worked madly to get pages to print. He was even in the distribution centre packing up copies of the first edition. From these humble beginnings the men’s fashion, visual arts, culture and design journal is now celebrating the release of its 10th issue – a milestone in today’s shrinking print world.
What started as a menswear blog, created to help Oakley Smith keep in touch with the Australian fashion industry while living in New York, Manuscript grew beyond expectation. Print seemed like the next logical step. “It grew and grew. I decided, if I was putting that much energy into it, I should print it.”
But in an age of digital dominance, why would anyone choose print? Manuscript weighs in on this debate in the latest edition with an article – featuring Broadsheet’s own publisher and director Nick Shelton – that pays tribute to the printed word. Other local publishing voices include Erik Jensen (The Saturday Paper) and Samuel Cooney (The Lifted Brow). For Oakley Smith, “A printed product has such weight; people do think of it as having a great sense of authenticity. There is a premium on it.”
It seems it is only onwards and upwards from here. Manuscript ’s stable and team continues to grow, with some impressive writers jumping on board, including Benjamin Law. And with the addition of a European fashion editor based out of Paris, Manuscript is making sure it stays relevant for international distribution too. We can’t wait for the 11th issue.
Manuscript is available at specialty book stores and major newsagents nationally.