Whether it’s for a commercial, music video, doc, or tour visuals… the way you style your text and typography is one of those little details that can take a project from 8 or 9 to a 10.

I recently had a unique opportunity to work specifically on that skillset for a tour with the artist, Cody Carnes.

The idea for this show was to make his song lyrics the hero. First of all, Cody is a brilliant lyricist, so I wanted that aspect of his artistry to shine. Secondly, we wanted to make this a show where people felt encouraged to sing along.

Now, since Cody was the opening act, we were also asked not to use the entire screen. So the idea of utilizing typography and minimal texture also allowed us to capitalize on the “negative space” or the black area of the screen. This was awesome because it made it feel like there was no set frame size and that we were using just as big of a screen area as the headliner (less is more!).

Below is a “before” still taken from the original export (not very inspiring)…

But after running it all through some of my favorite plugins and playing with texture, styling, etc. we got something a little more interesting:

This is the type of project that just gets me so excited because it’s proof that you can do so much with so little. And best of all… experimenting with these textures resulted in an effect that I could apply to other projects.

In fact I used it to add a new level of energy and intricacy to Cody’s show opener to life as well. We’re still working on the final audio (lol). But with a little sound design and with the band playing live on top of this track, it really came to life and set an amazing tone for the show.

I’m stoked about how all this turned out. And I love that it didn’t take a lot to make something really interesting.

Notice anything familiar btw? I built it almost entirely with Tour Visual Elements VOL 1 (plus a couple cheap/free stock assets I found online).

If you’re interested in seeing how I made this, I’m including a full breakdown of how I created this style (something I’ve kept pretty close to the chest til now) as a bonus lesson in my new Tour Visuals + Textures Masterclass.

To check it out click here, and see how you can bring some new texture to your projects as well!

Ezra Cohen