Seeing as I haven't written here in a while, let me elaborate:
The second project of my graphic design class was to design a spread for a feature article of a music magazine. I knew in a heartbeat that I'd choose to do an article spread on my favorite band Muse, and since I loved and knew them so well, I thought the project would be cake.
Man, was I in for a wake-up call.
We started out with three base sketches, each based from one concept about our band or music-topic of choice. My initial concepts included:
- Distrust and the 'Us vs. Them' theme that reoccur in their lyrics
- Their live performances and how they're such larger-than-life spectacles
- The effortless fusion of the rock and classical genres in their music
So I worked at it and thought of what I could do.
Should I draw them in a classical, black and white style? Nah, not BIG enough. I also wanted to make the picture epic, to echo their epicness. That's not a word.
Should I make Matt jump with his guitar into an orchestra? There aren't any good pictures of an orchestra I could use for that...
Should I put cheesy music notes everywhere?
Should I draw the cheesy music notes in a ROCK FASHION?
Should I superimpose their heads onto the bodies of the Greek Muses?*
Nothing seemed to be working out!
I spoke to nearly every single one of my friends and let them push ideas into me and I tried everything, but nothing worked. I was beginning to think that I couldn't do it anymore, that it was just too hard to visually combine rock and classical in the big, bombastic way that Muse does. I felt like I was wading through tar and sinking.
Then, after reading a few good recent articles on Muse, I decided to bang out some new concepts:
- They've gone crazy since they produced The Resistance themselves, and pulled out all the stops
- There is an air of ~romance~ that permeates through The Resistance, underneath all the resisting and evil governments and random flashes of classical music
- Matt the mad maestro.
But because I was desperate for something to do, I ran with concept number 2 and produced this.
It was fun, especially painting over Matt's face to make him look more like a Romantic painting, but in the end I still wasn't feeling it.
I came back to "Mad Maestro" and thought, what if I just made him a conductor?
I've played with trying to fuse pictures of him playing his guitar and his piano and being with an orchestra, but I thought that above all those, the conductor of an orchestra would be more widely recognized as a symbol of classical music.
So I superimposed his head onto the body of a conductor.
And then I thought, what about the rock aspect?
Surprisingly simple: Just add a guitar slung over his back!
I liked it a lot. I thought I was going to just title it and get it done, let the image do all the talking. That was the simplest way I could come up with their fusion of rock and classical.
It's not exciting enough, not the way Muse actually is! What was wrong with me? I needed something really attention-grabbing and bombastic, just like them, I needed a spectacle and possibly something that relates to space.
Thanks to this fantastic Star Brushset, I was able to very easily produce a nice space background.
After looking through some articles on Smashing Magazine (absolutely great and useful website for all you interested in computer artwork), I utilized some new skills I learned and finished up.
Critique was today.
I noticed a lot of people stopping to look at mine, and that felt really good. A lot of them seemed to like it :) The professor commended my solution to the "rock+classical" problem in the form of maestro-Matt with his guitar (yea, it's his guitar, I even looked up what sort of guitars Matt uses and picked the one that fit best, ha).
I thank everybody for all their help, I know I've been a bit of a whiner and pain for the duration of this project, but eventually I got out of the tar pit and came out with a project I'm truly proud of.
Oh, by the way, don't mind the cheesy text. I'm an artist, not a writer :P
*Points to whoever can guess which Muses Matt and Dom are!