Exercise 17

Abstract illustration

Exercise 17 – Abstract Illustration

In this exercise there was a choice of music suggested to listen to and I chose to listen to two so that a comparison could be made on the type of lines and images created.

The first was Mozart, and while listening I found that the images corresponded to the rhythm of each section and the various peaks and troughs of the lines related to the highs and lows of the strings.

When there was any form of voice to the music I found that my mind wandered to the shape of the mouth as the sound was coming out while at various other times I imagined a Jane Austen type world with women and horses and fans and etiquette. 

For comparison I tried listening to Miles Davis just to see if the graphs and peaks and mouth shapes were simply an active imagination or truly abstract.

The difference was very interesting.  The first piece of music was very relaxed and the instruments used were more towards the lower tones rather than the high strung sounds of Mozart.  The pace was much slower and more relaxed.  Some of the trumpet sounds were more pronounced and  I found my tendency was to focus on these as puffs of sound in a smokey jazz club.  The second image shows a more varied scale involved with the music and the image of a foot is present which is more specific to the rhythm and stairs type lines for the up and down of the scales.

All four pieces of music definitely produced very different lines and results.  The feelings evoked were definitely completely different from each other and I reckoned that merging them could possibly work together for some type of artists CD cover.

I blended both the options and adjusted the tones and the layers in Photoshop in order to get an inverted image.  Duplicating the layers I then adjusted the opacity of them to see what effect that might have on it.

Overall the image works well and could be used as some type of cover for a CD.  However, it doesn’t have that same energy that was in the music.  There is some trace of it there but I don’t feel it works fully as the cover.  There is definitely something to work with but it might be more of a first draft rather than a project that is brought to fruition.  It would be a good place to work from and then bring forward perhaps.  I am not convinced that it works well though so further listening to other tracks might produce the image that would work in a better way. 

In conclusion creating images from listening to music and not focusing on creating solid shapes can produce some very interesting effects that could be used in a fun way.  It’s definitely something I would try to incorporate for generating ideas for illustrations.  This first attempt at it was okay but it would need time to gather more images perhaps and then from a wider range you’d find something that could be brought to a new creative level for use in an illustration.