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: We’ll Be a Dream – We the Kings feat. Demi Lovato

1. we'll be a dream visual journal entry
This is one of the first artworks I did that was related to music.  I was taking a class called 2D Design and Color as a freshman in college.  Every week, my professor gave us a visual journal entry to do.  These visual journal entries were to be done in mixed media including paint, drawing, text, magazine cutouts, and anything else you could find.  It could be anything that fit under that particular theme.  I’m not sure what this one was but I remember being inspired by one song in particular.

Again, since I don’t remember this particular theme I can only assume.  It could have been about love…that seems to be my best guess here.  I was inspired by the song, “We’ll Be a Dream” by We the Kings featuring Demi Lovato.  That song has a very pretty and light melody to it.  The lyrics also inspired my design of this particular piece.  There are several references to dreams, night, and love in this particular song as well as being safe with someone.  I listened to the song on repeat and designed as I listened to it.  After a little bit of time, you start to feel the song and understand the lyrics.

In the background on the left, there’s cutouts of a poem I wrote about someone I had liked a lot. He was a guy from high school that was nice to me and I thought we had something.  I’m also a poet so sometimes I incorporate my poetry into my designs as well.  Also in the background are images I felt were relevant to the piece: stars, shiny diamonds, words that were relevant to the song, and images that added texture to the background such as the crumpled hill on the bottom right.

Overtop of those background images I applied paint going from a dark blue to a light blue and then finally to yellow.  The colors escalated that way because the song mentions dreaming and lights going out several times.  It has a very hopeful melody that made me think of a happiness at the end which is why the yellow is in the top right corner.  I also cut out several couples from magazines to show this sort of dream-like love that the song talks about.  My original plan was to keep them all faceless or have them with their backs turned since I didn’t want it to be any sort of specific couple.  There are two couples looking at stars whose backs are to the viewer and one other couple looking that I chose to show their faces because I had gone over a lot of that area in dark paint and wanted them to stand out.  The seated couples have white outlines on them sort of like thought bubbles as if they were in someone’s daydream.  I also wanted to show that love was the main idea of the piece by adding red and pink hands that looked like hands holding each other in the shape of a heart.

I chose to show the words “We’ll be a dream” because other than that being the name of the song I was inspired by, it sort of was the theme of the piece.  This was my interpretation of love that was very dream-like…sort of as if it was in someone’s daydream.  This was very close to me personally because this kind of daydream love was the only kind of romantic love that I had known: love in a very beautiful, hopeful dream.

This was the first of many musically inspired design pieces that I did.  It helped me to discover my design style.  I’ll add the song to a playlist of all the songs that I mention in this “Inspired by” series.  Enjoy!