If you want to pin down and attribute my entire existence as a designer to one specific thing, it would be music. Growing up playing in bands was the reason I developed a love for the role that art and design play in the experience, and much of my earliest work revolved around creating logos, t-shirt designs, CD packaging, and websites (remember MySpace?) for my own bands.
Although my client base has diversified exponentially since those days, I still try to work with bands I like as much as possible. I guess my younger years of recording albums and playing shows with my best friends etched a deep admiration of that lifestyle in me. I respect the shit out of anyone who chases the dream of being a full time touring musician (rockstar sounds way too cliché). So when I meet dudes who have that level of passion and drive, it’s a pleasure to be able to work with them and watch their careers as musicians move forward.
Forever Cadence: Album Artwork Case Study
Forever Cadence is a melodic hardcore band from Brampton, Ontario who came to me a few years ago with the request of doing some new t-shirt designs. Since then we’ve done many more projects together, everything from tour posters to websites to CD packaging, and it’s been awesome to help craft their visual identity and see them grow from a local band into a heavily touring act that’s currently on the Vans Warped Tour.
The most recent project from the FC boys was the album artwork for their latest release Something Greater. They had an artistic direction in mind that was in line with their first album, and wanted to stick to the same general style but with an updated theme. The idea was to incorporate a lantern and roses into a tattoo flash-style drawing, and then give it a rough, worn look with the colour. The concept began as a rough sketch in my trusty Moleskine, developed into an inked line work drawing (using my own hand holding a highlighter as model – there’s a Seinfeld joke in here somewhere), and eventually the final product with the help of some heavy colour layering and texturizing in Photoshop. The process is below.