Many visual artists are deeply inspired by the music that they listen to. Art forms are often interconnected, but there are few mediums that tend to share as much of a similar soul and feeling behind them as visual art and music. This shows up in a massive variety of ways, from the importance of album art to the merchandise and visual aesthetic that is such a critical part of any band. These two disciplines of art share so many motives and focuses in the ways that they are created and consumed.
Often, people who create visual art love to give tributes to the musicians and bands that give them inspiration on a daily basis. Many artists listen to all kinds of music as they create their art, and the ability to give a tribute to the artists that end up meaning so much to them can be a massive privilege and passion that many visual artists love to live for. As such, there are countless visual representations of the music that visual artists and illustrators love so much.
These pieces can range from illustrations of mediums and genres to artists and people themselves. There are countless ways that visual artists show their passion and gratefulness for the sonic excitement that music brings, and these are a few selected pieces that independent artists have created for Canvas Cultures.
1. Box Boomin
For many people, when they think of music, they think of the venerable boombox. These portable sets of speakers were the medium that countless people and artists listened to music on and shared the songs and artists they were passionate about. This community-creating ability coupled with the fact that they had such an iconic design led to a product that is legendary in the music world. This legend still continues, even decades after boomboxes have been overtaken in prominence by smaller and more accessible Bluetooth speakers.
But the look of the boombox harkens back to a sweet and nostalgic time, nonetheless. These speaker systems were used to pull people together through their accessible cassette decks. This caused boomboxes to start the whole culture of creating mixtapes that people would share with the people they loved.
This illustration speaks to the excitement and passion that boomboxes incited. It excitingly displays the wild and brilliant colors that often define the experiences that people had through these incredible devices. Anyone who was around for the golden age of boomboxes knows exactly what these incredible sets of speakers meant to the world, and this illustration pays tribute to that.
2. Purple Haze, by Ross Baines
When it comes to the question of who the greatest guitar player ever is, there are occasionally a few different answers. Some might say Jimmy Page or Eric Clapton, some oddballs like Jonny Greenwood or Jack White, or even some new technical masters like John Mayer or Mateus Asato. However, for most people who have a greater understanding of the magic that the electric guitar possesses, the answer will often be Jimi Hendrix.
Jimi Hendrix had a short yet incredibly vibrant career, dying at the age of 27 in 1970. Despite the short amount of time that he had on earth, Jimi single-handedly reinvented the art of the electric guitar and turned it into a magical and brilliant way to express himself. He is often remembered for his brilliant mastery of the entirety of the guitar, and flamboyant showmanship, often playing the guitar behind his back, without looking, and even with his teeth! Jimi was a true master of the instrument, and his legendary exploits in music are well documented through several live recorded performances. He was a brilliant musician and an incredible example of what pure artistry looks like in a musician.
This incredible illustration of Jimi Hendrix shows off his iconic look and pays tribute to the way that he always operated in a manner of laid-back confidence. He lived in a way that made his mastery of the instrument that he wielded effortlessly and simply just an extension of himself. His brilliance as a musician will go down in history as consistently fresh and exciting; Jimi Hendrix will never be forgotten and never grow old.
3. Les Paul, by Robert Anthony Jacobs
Of all the different physical designs for electric guitars, there are a few that stand out above the others. The designs of the Stratocaster and Telecaster by Leo Fender are some of the most recognizable and appreciated designs. The classic look of newer Paul Reed Smith guitars has found approval and appreciation by many different artists over the years. But perhaps the most venerable and legendary design in the history of rock music is the iconic Les Paul guitar.
The guitar company Gibson first released the Les Paul guitar in 1952 to critical acclaim by countless artists and musicians all around the world. While it started off as a signature model guitar for the legendary player of the same name, the guitar itself very quickly started to make waves in the world. The combination that the design had of class, elegance, and grace made it visually appealing to countless guitarists. That same design and sound remain incredibly relevant and important to thousands, if not millions, of musicians worldwide today.
This illustration of the iconic guitar shows the brilliance of the look that the Les Paul guitar has. There are few more venerable shapes in the history of rock and roll or even music in general. The Les Paul has become a guitar design which all other designs are often measured by, and few, if any other designs have come close. This guitar is the face of what it looks like to be a masterful guitar player, balancing beauty with raw power. This dominant design is sure to bring inspiration and excitement to any musician who needs a reminder of what it means to rock and roll.
4. Jazz, by Bart Cooper
The world of music is incredibly diverse. There are countless genres and styles that appeal to all kinds of different people and can give joy in new and exciting ways. Some people may be strongly influenced by and drawn to rock music, while others might go to rap. Reggae is very popular in many areas of the world, while simple pop music dominates other areas and people. The most beautiful part of music is that it is one of the most subjective and accessible art forms, allowing almost anyone to find something that will really resonate with them.
Out of all of these genres, there is one that tends to be viewed as the common ancestor of several others. That genre is Jazz. It is a style that is mainly focused on complex arrangements that have beautiful ways of working their way into people’s hearts and minds. It often employs magically complex and colorful harmonies and melodies as the centerpiece to every composition. There are millions of people to whom jazz is one of the most mystifying and complex forms of art in the world. Many jazz musicians have to take years and even decades out of their life to really get to the place where they can really thrive in the extremely musically complex environment that jazz has to offer.
This illustrious design by independent artist Bart Cooper visually explains the musical magic that jazz has to offer. There are colors all over the place, just how jazz pulls its beauty and color from several different places, often at once. Though it may seem disjointed at first glance, the beauty of jazz often comes from its initial confusion. The more that a person grows to understand the beauty of jazz, the better their life will often be.
Music is a very powerful thing. It speaks to billions of people all around the world on a daily basis and in ways that can change lives in very real and vital ways. Many communities can be pulled together through music because of the incredible power that music has over the heart of a human. There are few types of art that can more firmly create things that didn’t exist without it in a sustainable way.
Artists know that fact in a depth that is often unmatched. The impact that music has on other art forms is deep and intense and is often found in countless places, from movie soundtracks, dance songs, and theater performances. Music is something that gives the brain something to hold onto and make sure that the important parts are remembered. It’s critical that people understand how important music is to the world, and these illustrations on our website show that in a real way. Check out the music section of Canvas Cultures today!