005. My Design Inspiration Pt. 01 - Music


An empty cup can’t sing.

I don’t think that’s a saying. Actually I’ve just googled it and I think what I was thinking of was the saying ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup’ but you get what I meant.

Everyone needs inspiration, and you drawn inspiration from everything constantly whether you are aware of it or not! There are the obvious places we pull inspiration, photography, other designers ect, these are the things we show our clients in moodboards. Visuals is what the end result of a project will be so it makes sense that that is how we show our vision to a client.


It’s unlikely we could give a client a playlist and they would understand the vibe and visuals of a brand, but that’s sometimes what the creative process is.


Drawing from all creative mediums to bring it and incorporate it into your own. So I wanted to create a series where I share some of my conventional and unconventional things I draw inspiration from. First up is music.

I think this is a pretty obvious ones for us all, music drives me and it drives my day. I wake up and put a playlist on, music isn’t just an inspiration for me, it’s also my motivator. I enjoy listening to most kinds of music (apart from country and EDM), but there are few really stand out artists and bands that I want to showcase here.


P.s I've linked my favourite song/music video for each artist in their titles if you're feeling frisky!


This guy is absolutely amazing. His songs are written from a place that seems so out of what his music actually sounds like. The music that he creates sounds very much like gritty 80’s inspired pop-rock ballads. But his lyrics come from a character that can often be interpreted as a creepster. It’s a very interesting combo that I don’t think anyone else could pull off.



If you haven’t heard anything from Beach House before, firstly, how dare you?! But secondly, they are a pop-synth group that creates very dreamy sequences (I feel like that’s better than calling the songs). They have a very strong ethereal vibe to them which can be very inspiring and also motivational. Most of their songs also sound like a song playing when the credits roll on a movie, so if that’s your thing?



This is the first item on this list where I think the crossover between anyone reading this and fans of this group will probably be at a 0. But if you are into hip-hop or rap at all definitely give these guys a go. They’re reminiscent of Odd Future (and heavily inspired by them) but I would say they are a much more refined and organised version. To me they help me a lot with energy and colour in my designs and creative thinking, because boy do these boys have energy! If you do decide to listen to these guys I would encourage listening along with their music videos.



And now for something completely different. A folk-pop duo. These girls create an amazing harmony between the two of them. I would describe them as high energy folk music, they’re clearly very passionate about their craft and that shows very clearly through their music. I think this is something in their music I’m very inspired by. I listen to these guys when I want simple but with a lot of personality.



This is also another artist where I could hear a lot of his music on end credits. I honestly don’t have a lot to write about this guy but it’s another one of those that I think their music videos are just as important as their music (even though the purpose of this was to share things that weren’t visual, I know)!



And last, but could never be least, Tyler The Creator. Sometimes I can be in a Goblin mood or a Flower Boy mood, but I am always in a Tyler mood. I will admit I am especially inspired by Flower Boy, I think that album is very emotional which is why I’m so drawn to it. It’s a very emotional album in a colourful way, which is a lot of the time what I try to create visually, so this album helps me do so.


That’s all folks! I’ve created a (very strange) playlist featuring a couple of my favourite tracks from these guys in case you were interested. I did try to make it flow in a logical way but I’ll warn you know it gets a lil weird, so enjoy!

- Maisie MacDonald, Creative Director, Maisie Heather Studio.