Earlier in this series, we introduced you to Emily Hamma Martin of Orange Beautiful. Now meet her blogging partner and friend, Laura Naples—a graphic designer and calligrapher who creates handmade stationery. Just before moving her studio into a new room in her Northeast Ohio home, she gave us a glimpse at how music inspires her workday.
What do you listen to while you work? Typically, music that falls into three categories: mellow, nostalgic, or energizing.
How do you listen? Computer speakers or my iPod docking station if I’m not doing work on the computer.
Do you have any favorite music websites/providers? Pandora! I love it. My best friend from high school just created a shared Pandora station for us comprised of all the ’80s love songs we used to listen way back when. It’s called “Separate Lives Radio”—named after the Phil Collins song, but it also alludes to the fact that we live two states away.
Does music influence your work? Can you show me an example? Probably. I sometimes try to match a musical genre to the type of project I’m creating, for subliminal inspiration. When creating my daughter’s birth announcement, I listened to sweet, happy songs that reminded me of her—like “Dream a Little Dream of Me” by The Mamas and The Papas and songs by Ingrid Michaelson. When blogging, I like to listen to one of the Pandora stations because the element of the unexpected mimics the blogging process—browsing blogs and sites, following newfound links, discovering amazing companies, designers and products I never knew existed—or seeing new work by old favorites.
Where do you find music recommendations? Friends, blogs, independent radio stations, and, occasionally, magazines. Blueprint magazine used to have great music recommendations, so I still dig out back issues of that magazine for ideas. Even NPR—that is how my husband and I first heard Arcade Fire.
Who influences your musical taste? My dad listened to a lot of classic rock when we were growing up, and my mom loved musicals and show tunes, which I also still enjoy. But other influences include travel—a trip to France many years ago introduced me to Carla Bruni’s music; my husband—he always finds new bands that we both like; friends.
What song or artist best represents the work you create? Feist. I saw one of her shows and she incorporated some really interesting shadow art and silhouettes. Visually, it was simply executed, not fancy—but it gave the show a warm, creative energy. It resonated with the kind of work I like to do.
Leather and Lace, Stevie Nicks with Don Henley
Fitz and the Dizzyspells, Andrew Bird
In Between Days, The Cure
Happiness is Overrated, The Airborne Toxic Event
Ses Monuments, Sea Wolf
Bittersweet, Big Head Todd and the Monsters
The Relator, Pete Yorn and Scarlett Johansson
Straight On, Heart
One Evening, Feist
Strawberry Swing, Coldplay
Black Balloon, The Kills
Lucky Man, The Verve
All Night Long, Lionel Richie