Inspired By: Ray Toro Article

Ray Toro Article Cover Ray Toro Spread

(all photos of Ray Toro are not mine; this was used for a school project and I give credit to those whose pictures they are; article property of Jason Pettigrew and Alt Press)

For my Typography II class we had to do a magazine article layout. Now seeing as I love doing article layouts and I love music, I figured this would be the perfect way to combine the two. I did a magazine article layout last year for a 21 Pilots article and I had so much fun with it that I wanted to do another music -inspired layout. We had to take an article that we found online and lay it out for a magazine.

I listened to the songs mentioned in the article which were: Isn’t That Something and For the Lost and the Brave and decided to make an article based off of those and My Chemical Romance songs, since he was a part of that band for a while.

I chose to do the black background because it fit better with the style of music than a white or light colored background. I wanted to do white text since that would stand out the most, and I chose to do red accent colors because that also fit the style of music. The red sections of text are the interviewers questions, and the white sections are Ray Toro’s answers. I added broken glass throughout the article to reflect the title “There may be expectations, but I’m Out to Shatter Them.” I also chose those two pictures to reflect the color scheme throughout the article. The first shattered glass image frames Ray Toro’s face. The others just play on the background image to keep up consistency within the  article. The text for the drop caps on the second and third pages are similar to those of My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade album. I chose to do the title on an angle because this type of music isn’t just normal music, it’s different in the sense of style and I felt that it was better represented by unconventional titling. I chose to put it on a semi-transparent box so it was easier to read and I continued that throughout the rest of the article for pull quotes which also have a smaller version of the title text.

I had a lot of fun with this project since it’s something I love to do. Article design is one of my most favorite types of design to do because you can really make a beautiful artwork by taking the type of article and representing it in your design. If you have the chance, check out Ray Toro’s Soundcloud since I can’t add him to the playlist. The songs are amazing…and For the Lost and the Brave is a very powerful and moving song. Hope you enjoy!

Inspired By: Fall Out Boy – Save Rock and Roll

3. FOB Bauhaus Posterfob save rock and roll album cover

This piece was done for one of my beginner graphic design classes.  Also, right around this time, I  had started listening to Fall Out Boy.  For this assignment we had to take inspiration from Mike Joyce’s Swissted project.  Swissted is an ongoing project that combines Bauhaus style designs for old concert and music posters.  It’s honestly one of my favorite design series and Mike Joyce is one of my favorite designers.  For this project, my Professor told us to each pick an album and following Joyce’s example, turn it into a Bauhaus inspired poster design.  So I chose to do my Bauhaus inspired design on Fall Out Boy’s album Save Rock and Roll, which was their first album after coming back from a three year hiatus.  On the left is my Save Rock and Roll inspired poster and on the right is Fall Out Boy’s actual album cover design (not my image, property of Island and Decaydance Records).

I started this piece by looking at what colors took up most of the design.  I noticed that two of the main colors were black and maroon.  I also noticed several different browns and the white of the text and the smoke.  I tried to balance the black and maroon as they were in the original album artwork.  I added a thick black vertical line to the left, and a slightly thinner horizontal maroon line at the top.  I also used maroon as an accent color to prevent the piece from being too bland.  I chose two different tans, one darker, one lighter, both very similar to the ground in the album artwork and broke it up into two big chunks since the ground is a large area in the original artwork.  The darker brown that I used for some of the thinner lines was taken from the blurred part of the background.  The white in most of the text is taken from the white of the text in the album art.  The grey-blue of the “Save Rock” was taken from the left boy’s jeans.

The font for the Fall Out Boy on the left of my design, is very similar to that of the actual album art.  I wanted to keep the primary font as close to the original as I could so that it would translate between the two images.  I chose the font for “Save Rock and Roll” different from the title font, because I wanted the band name to be the primary focus of the design.  I chose that font because it was a sans serif like the original, but not as serious as the typeface used for the band name.  Looking back now, I might have chosen a different typeface for “Save Rock and Roll” but I don’t mind the font I chose a few years ago.

I don’t remember if I listened to the album specifically while working on this piece, but it’s influences can be seen in the original artwork which is where I got my inspiration from.  I added the whole album to the Inspired By Playlist and I hope you’ll give it a listen.  This album is one of my favorite all time albums.  I also encourage you to check out Mike Joyce and his Swissted project if you have the chance because his work is amazing and he’s been such an inspiration to me.  Overall, I think this is one of my most favorite musically inspired pieces because of the beautiful simplicity of it and because it’s artwork for one of my favorite bands.

Inspired By: We the Kings

2. we the kings visual journal entry

This was the second music inspired artwork I did, but it was the first where I actually let the music inspire my brushstrokes.  This was an actual assignment to listen to music and make a piece showing what you felt while listening to it.  I chose to listen to We the Kings for this piece.  For those of you that don’t know, We the Kings are a pop-punk-ish band.  I put on two of their albums, We the Kings and Smile Kid, while working on this project to get my inspiration for the piece.

I think I started this piece with blue and green, thick vertical stripes.  Then I started adding on top of that.  In the bottom left corner, there’s an image transfer of the band.  There’s also a cd in the top right corner that my freshman roommate had given me for art purposes since she didn’t want it anymore.  I don’t remember the cd itself but I knew this was the perfect piece to use it for.  I really like how it reflects and shines depending on the light on the piece.  I started layering colors on top of the stripes as I listened to their music.  There was a lot of swirls and lot of color intensity because when I listen to We the Kings that’s what I feel.  Their music is very layered and the different colored swirls and splotches reflect the energy of the music.  To balance the cd in the top corner, I did two electric guitar image transfers on the bottom right.  I also layered paint over the image of the band so only their faces could be seen.

This piece is visually representative of the music.  It’s what I felt when I was listening as opposed to the last piece which played more on the lyrics.  I’m going to add a few of my favorite We the Kings songs to the Inspired By Playlist for this piece.  As you can see, I really liked We the Kings when I was 18 or so.  I do still listen to them now (even as I’m writing this piece)!