My name is Benjamin Symonds, I'm currently part of the BA Illustration course at AUCB.

What you see on here is a mix of my work and other peoples that I admire/take inspiration from & not just illustrators... work from all areas of art. I'm also using this blog as a digital sketchbook for course assesment etc.

Note. Click on any image to see it in full.

Friday, 5 February 2010

New Brief, Digital Imaging:

Welcome to the second decade of the 21st century! But, how will we remember the 'The Noughties?’  

At the turning of a decade, the media is always filled with a lot of retrospection about the developments and happenings over the past ten years. In the UK, the 1960’s for example, were identified with the era of free love, women’s lib, the pill, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, to name but a few occurrences. By comparison, the ‘70’s were typified by social unrest, three-day weeks and Glam Rock, whilst the ‘80’s epitamised an age of self-interest and greed. Conversely, the1990’s denoted a growing awareness and regard for the planet and green issues, but what of ‘The Noughties?’

This project can been taken pretty much anywhere, I just have to have a set of 6 images (4 Final) presented on screen at the end of it all, I was accused of producing to much work for the last project!? So i'm going to try consentrate solely on my 6 or so images this time, making them as polished as possible.

I've decided to focus the project on music from the past decade.

I started out looking at "Top Album" lists from various publishers such as NME, The Observer, Pitchfolk, Rolling Stone & Stereogum they all included some great albums which I could definitely use as i source of inspiration! Then I had a look at album/single sales from various areas of the world but pretty much all the top selling music from the last decade is horrendous and nothing close to inspiring (at least in my opinion). Artists inclue Eminem, Norah Jones, Shakira, Nickelback & then a few bands which havn't actualy released any new material this decade such as the Beatles.

Changes in trends through out the 00's;

Electro became popular, replacing the mainstream of more jazzy and Latin influenced sounds from the beginning of the decade. Electro artists such as Justice and MSTRKRFT gained huge popularity in clubs around the world, aswell as there live gig's. Dubstep evolved and achieved more mainstream success within the dance music scene, with artists like Skream and T2 becoming well-known. Dance and eurodance singers and bands such as Basshunter, and Cascada become popular around the world.

Grime, a distinctly British version of hip hop, became popular, with notable artists such as Dizzee Rascal and Tinchy Stryder achieving success.

Post-Britpop bands such as Coldplay and Keane followed after the success of Radiohead and The Verve to the top of the album charts during the decade. British Indie rock and indie pop returns to popularity in the mid-late 2000s with artists such as Arctic Monkeys, Franz Ferdinand, Amy Winehouse, Kaiser Chiefs, Enter Shikari, Bloc Party, The Libertines, Editors, Lily Allen Florence And The Machine, and the The Ting Tings achieving great chart success. Some bands that may not be as well know found success during the 00's including: Funeral for a Friend, Bring Me the Horizon, You Me At Six, Lostprophets.

Teen pop evolved into teen pop-rock/pop punk acts in the early 2000s, with artists such as Busted and McFly. Animated musicians become popular, with the likes of Crazy Frog, Gorillaz, and Schnappi, das kleine Krokodil. Girl groups Sugababes and Girls Aloud span successful careers throughout most of the decade. The Spice Girls announced an end in 2001 but later came back for a brand new tour in 2007. British female soul artists achieve chart success in the late 2000s. Joss Stone, was a British singer who sold more albums in the 2000s with 10 million albums worldwide. 

Reality talent shows which gave people the opportunity of a singing career became very popular with UK TV audiences (Popstars, Pop Idol, Fame Academy and The X Factor). Eurovision Song Contest is very important for the European Music (Not so much for us though). 1980s female pop stars Madonna and Kylie Minogue both have a big presence on the European music scene both having numerous hits in the 2000s. Britney Spears became a huge impact throught the continent and was of the most succsessful artist of the decade in the region.

Australia and New Zealand:
Bands such as The Vines and Jet become very popular around 2002–2003, paving the way for a mass of new groups midway through the decade such as, Evermore & Wolfmother.

Pop was very popular among youth, mainly due to the American influence of successful and popular artist like Britney Spears, who became a huge phoenomenon throught the decade. Pink was one of the biggest artist of the decade in Australia.

Early into the decade, Australian Hip Hop had huge success through an Adelaide Hip-Hop trio, Hilltop Hoods. They became the first successful Australian Hip Hop outfit, followed by a Sydney Hip-Hop trio, Bliss n Eso. The New Zealand Hip-Hop scene have seen the success of Scribe.

Latin America and Caribbean:
In 2002, New York-based group Aventura reinvented bachata, thus making it a dominant Latin genre. Although salsa and merengue began to decline in popularity, merengue would have new life injected thanks to the subgenre known as, "merengue de calle" (or street merengue).

Shakira also become a dominant pop star with reggaeton-crossover hits such as "La Tortura", "She Wolf" and "Hips Don't Lie". Other American artist such as Madonna and Britney Spears gained succes.

J-Pop stayed the most popular style of music in Japan. Japanese Pop´s popularity continues to expand through Asia and the rest of the world, with various Japanese artists debuting in the US. J-Pop starts to enjoy a relatively big global online fan base. It continues to influence worldwide styles of music, as Japanese culture has continuously become more popular around the world. Japan also remains as the second most powerful musical industry in the world, and the second largest music market, after the US. Hip-Hop also started to become more popular. At the end of the decade, Dance music and Techno become the most popular genres.

The Indian music industry was previously dominated by the 'Filmi' music of Bollywood for much of the late 20th century. The 00's saw an increasing popularity of independent Indian pop music that could compete with Bollywood music. Indian pop music began distinguishing itself from mainstream Bollywood music with its fusion of Indian and non-Indian sounds, which later had on influence on Bollywood music itself. India has one of the largest music markets in the world, though like other developing nations, suffers from high levels of piracy.

The Rise of Piracy:
In the 21st century, we all spent far less money on recorded music than then in the 90's. Total revenues for CDs, vinyl, cassettes and digital downloads in the U.S. dropped from a high of $14.6 billion in 1999 to $10.4 billion in 2008. This dramatic decline in revenue has caused large-scale layoffs inside the industry, driven music retailers out of business and forced record companies, record producers, studios, recording engineers and musicians to seek new business models. In the early years of the decade, the record industry took aggressive action against illegal file sharing. In 2001 it succeeded in shutting down Napster (the leading on-line source of digital music), and it has threatened thousands of individuals with legal action (Including a 13 year old girl & a dead person!?). This failed to slow the decline in revenue. Some academic studies have even suggested that downloads did not cause the decline. Legal digital downloads became widely available with the debut of the iTunes Store in 2003. The popularity of internet music distribution has increased and by 2007 more units sold over the internet than in any other form.

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