By now, you've probably peeped the cover stories from our annual Style & Design issue (Kid Cudi x Augor Cover | Keri Hilson x So-Me Cover), but do you know the full story? Los Angeles graf artist Augor, who collaborated with Kid Cudi to create one side of the issue's striking visuals, took to his blog yesterday to give the world a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process, including a gang of exclusive sketches that led him to the final product. Take a look at some of the images and artist's insight below...
It all starts with sketches. On his blog, Augor writes,
"Going along with the ideas herd in KID CUDI's music a couple drawings were done on the plane ride from LA to NY in prep for a meeting that was to be held at the COMPLEX office about what ideas Augor had for the photo shoot."
We're not sure why the third person is needed, but hey, he's good with the pen, so his choice! Check the preliminary ideas that Augor brought when meeting with Complex's Art team and Cudi:
"After a few crude sketches were produced the realization that maybe the all grey toned approach wouldn't catch the impact Cudi was trying to get with the shoot...Once back in LA Augor took screen prints and got to work with a 2 week deadline laying the base plans down of how his imagery would fit with the photos."
Augor was on hand to help art-direct the cover shoot with Cudi, and following some input from the musicain and Complex, Augor began going in with color and some heavier line drawings:
It's a step by step process, with many rounds of sketches. On his blog, Augor continues:
"After getting a solid idea of how the interior illustrations were going to fit, development took place on the finals."
"After doing the analog part of the illustrations it was time to move onto the digital bond. Along side with co worker Sram we tossed around a few ideas on what would suit Augor's illustrations the best. Here are some in process pics of making it happen."
"After the hard part (of figuring out what was going to be in the illustrations) was done another hard part surfaced... .how do we make the background pop without overpowering the monster and Cudi? A couple background elements were drawn and scrapped but one made the cut that was used in sections throughout the spread"
"With all the elements into play the final interior illustrations were produced"
"After knocking out the interior the hardest part is saved for last!!
Developing a cover. A cover itself is extremely crucial. It is what catches the eye and draws a customer in. So in developing this a few ideas were passed on before the final came out. The first idea was to have Cudi as some sort of sorcerer in the woods. Very Halloweeen like."
"Even though it was a cool concept the first cover attempt didn't mesh well with the summer heat the issue was due to drop in so it was back to the drawing board. Here are the ink drawings used to compose the final cover"
"After trial and re trial this is what came out of the new set up."
"The background cover kind of felt a little mack and cheese and the snake man was clouding Cudi's flow so the final cover that will go to print has a very aqua splash feeling... "
"Hope everyone enjoys the issue"
For Augor's full behind-the-scenes look, be sure to visit his blog.
Related: Complex's Kid Cudi x Augor cover story