My Big Break

My Big Break: Otis Remix CD Cover


I put a great amount of work into our last Remix assignment in the audio category. I created an “educational rap,” for students to one of my favorite songs “Otis,” by Jay-Z and Kanye West. Although I must say that I do not listen to rap music very much, Jay-Z is my favorite rapper and Watch the Throne, his collaboration CD with Kanye West is one of my favorite albums. I spent a lot of time listening to that album, whether on my iPod, iPhone, or even my car trips. I even treated myself to tickets to the Watch the Throne tour for my birthday! There were many songs on the album that I enjoyed; however, Otis, the CD’s first single was definitely my favorite. I am an R&B girl and Kanye West, the sample or remix king, perfected the mix of hardcore rap and sensual soul. He used a sample from Try a Little Tenderness, by Otis Redding, hence the title of the song. When I was thinking of songs to use I figured I’d use my love for R&B and Jay-Z to help me out.  With this third remix project we were asked to do some designing. One of the options was to create an Album cover. I thought that it’d be a perfect idea to piggyback off of my previous remix and create my album cover for my Otis Remix song!

The motivation for my cover begins with the song Otis itself. In the video West and Z(Jay that is), can be seen styling and profiling in front of a very funky looking American Flag. This flag was also used as the backdrop while they were performing the song at the concert. I felt that if I were to truly pay homage to the creators of one of my favorite songs and inspiration for my remix I had to some way incorporate that flag in my cover. Next I thought it’d be cool to have some sort of picture of me on the album since everyone buying it would need to put a face to the name. I am not actually putting the song on iTunes, but every up and coming artist needs to be seen. Where Jay-Z and Kanye can have a silhouette on their album I’d need a little bit more for my marketing because I am not yet on that level! I found a picture of me sporting a New York Yankee snap back cap and felt it’d be perfect for the picture. Snap Backs are all the rage in young fashion today and I also felt that I’d incorporate another small coincidence that Jay-Z and I have. We are both from New York and he can always be seen sporting a New York Yankees hat. In his song Empire State of Mind, he states that he “Made the Yankee hat more famous than a Yankee can!” I don’t know if that is necessarily true, but in his Black Album CD cover he is doing a similar pose to mine and I thought it’d be cool to channel my inner Jay-Z!

When creating my album cover, I went with Pixlr again! I thought it’d be a good choice; however, this time I used more options. I inserted the Flag as my backdrop by inserting the link. Next I inserted my picture, which I took on my MacBook Pro in the Photo Booth with the Thermal Camera effect. When the picture was inserted over the American Flag, I used the History Brush and eraser to edit and bring back most of the Flag. Next I used the text to insert the words. I typed the Title of the song and my name and changed my font to Boycott and changed the color to blue to match the Blue in the flag. Finally I sized the font accordingly. I used a Focal Blur to blur the edges and make my picture and most of the words my focal point. Finally I selected color and changed the Hue, Saturation, and lightness to get it exactly how I wanted it.

I really enjoyed this project and thought it’d be a cool way to tie my two Remix projects together. Who knows perhaps the world premier of the Otis Remix video will be coming to a screen near you! Check back to Remix 4!