Designing to music

Photo by bburky
Take a look around your average design studio and you'll find either a stereo pumping out tunes or a room full of headphone wearing designers.

Recently I was working on a visual design brief whilst listening to the guitar jangling, floppy fringeness of  Bombay Bicycle Club. The next day the brief change (bloody typical) and I started again, this time I happened to be listening to the warm bleeps and twitchy bloops of Mount Kimbie. What struck me at the end of day 2 was how different the tone of my work was. The use of colour particularly struck me as more restrained on day two, as was the level of depth I had applied to the graphic elements (shadows, gradients, effects etc). I started to wonder if the music I was listening to had impacted on my visual sense and the outcome could have been persuaded by my choice of music that day. This in turn led me to wonder if there are better types of music for designing with each brand. For example listening to Noah and the Whale might lead to more successful and 'on brand' design for Innocent. Whilst it might prove more fruitful to design for Uniqlo whilst listening to Yeasayer.

Maybe it's a case of wider influences and music, just playing a small part. Or perhaps music affects my mood and it's the general mood that influences the design decisions. Either way I'm going to experiment over the coming months with different music types to find the perfect sound for me to work with.