Matt Willet is the art designer for “Airs – A Rock Opera”.
Matt is and has always been an artsy guy. Born and raised in small-town Massachusetts, studied at Bristol Community College and the University of Massachusetts - Dartmouth he enjoys and engages in freelance work whenever he can.
This project was a challenge to Matt, who tends to linger with contemporary and "slick" design. It was a project that made him think outside of clean lines and get his hands dirty … figuratively and literally. (The pages in the booklet, for example, sampled from a few escapades with coffee, dirt, and mold applied to paper.)
The Airs Rock Opera project, or simply to Matt and those involved "the Airs project", began a while back when Matt was attending Bristol Community College of Fall River. It was presented as a real-world scenario project in a publications design class. There was an added bonus, the client would select whom they felt best represented the material and would allow him or her to proceed with the production of it.
There was INSANE competition; and iterations of Airs that the public may never see. Some contemporary and super modern takes, some more traditional, and there was only a few that lingered in the same thematic category as the ones selected. Matt was among several students who were chosen by George and Steve (the clients) and proceeded to round two of production, with revisions and some minor changes.
After some minor hardships and fantastic strides in development, the Airs project began to take shape. It radically evolved from a simple booklet into an immersible world where the characters live. The most amount of time was dedicated to the development of the Wordmark (the “Airs – A Rock Opera logo) and Emblem (Owen's Kite) of the project.
Owen's Kite, the symbol for Airs, was something realized out of a daydream listening to the music. Shortly after, Matt began conceptualizing the Wordmark for Airs. Something dark and mysterious, but aged and (relatively speaking) historically accurate for it's appearance. And with the inclusion of some hidden imagery of course. It is after all, an opera with intrigue!
"The music is vivid and charged with life." Matt says. "Its nice to listen to in many iterations." Speaking to variations, on "Now I Know" (the opening piece to the production) there is the original rough cut sampled to the design class, which later became the final cut and then there is Steve's original piano solo that is "…haunting - in a good way," says Matt.
"It was an awesome time, working in the development of it. I can't wait to see where it goes." Matt says, "It was plenty of fun, but now, I really would like to see the show!"
Please explore Matt Willet Design at www.mattwillettdesign.com