Watch artists and experts share insights on using Canvas – short, looping visuals that immerse listeners in your track – in this episode of the Game Plan.
Music and art have always been a perfect pairing, and every artist knows their visual identity is an incredibly important way to attract and connect with fans. Canvas, a free tool from Spotify for Artists, is album artwork for the streaming age. It allows you, the artist, to upload three-to-eight-second looping visuals for each of your tracks as a proven way to draw in fans and keep them engaged. The data speaks for itself: Listeners are 20% more likely to add a track to their playlists if they see the Canvas.
While uploading a Canvas is simple enough, creating the right Canvas for your audience is both an art and a science. In this episode of the Game Plan, we tapped artists and experts to help you make your Canvas strategy perfect and give you insights into how others have made the most of the tool.
Here are three of their top tips for using Canvas:
1. Keep It Clean
Choose footage without talking, singing, or rapping, and avoiding any intense flashing graphics. Also avoid text or typography.
2. Choose a Striking Style
A “continuous loop” is seamless, a ”hard cut” has clear edit points, and a ”rebound” is an edit that plays your clip forward and then reverses it.
3. Share to Social
Whenever you or your fans share your track from Spotify to Instagram, Snapchat, or Facebook Stories, your Canvas will loop in the background.
South Korean synth pop artist Su Lee says that for “artists like myself who are doing everything on their own,” key is the ability “to change and switch Canvases whenever (you) want.”
Electronic artist San Holo, who works closely with creative director Thorwald, also sees a lot of value in complementing music with visuals via Canvas. “The artwork for us is a piece of the story,” the Netherlands-based musician says. “And, the Canvases allow us to just tell a bit more.”