The Illustrated Mixtape is a combination of bringing back the immense pleasures of spending countless hours gazing at the cover art of your favourite records and the intimate thrill of getting a mixtape from someone who wanted to share a piece of themselves with you. If you were lucky, it was decorated with a handwritten tracklist, biro line art and maybe even a note about what each song meant to them (or what it should mean to you).
Remember that? I do. And I missed that.
I’ve been sharing music with friends in some mixtape form or another, for as long as I can remember – from borrowing my brother’s Salt-N-Pepa Push It cassette to play in class, to the weekly ritual of taping Shadoe Steven’s Sunday night countdown of the American Top 40 off the radio, to eventually hosting a weekly specialist music show on Sydney’s oldest community/public radio station for over a decade.
I’ve spent years tinkering on my own, so now I’m super excited to be able to bounce ideas off people who energize and challenge me creatively. ILMX allows me to collaborate with, and share the art of, my brilliant friends, admired colleagues and inspirational strangers.
Integral to ILMX is the talented and encouraging Alex Riegert-Waters whose handprint is all over this site. The vim and vigor that he brings to everything he does has made all the futzing about on this site far less painful and boring than it otherwise would’ve been, and of course, all of the visual branding you see on this site was created by Alex. Thanks also to my old friend CC Hua and her company Topfive Designs who helped build the site.
All the stories, dreams, poems and other words you read are by me, Leigh Tran, unless noted otherwise.
Anyway I hope you enjoy the mixtapes, and feel free to say hi to me on Instagram, Twitter, Behance, Dribbble or Tumblr. While you’re at it, why not follow us on Mixcloud or Spotify to never miss a tune?
About Leigh Tran: Radio producer and DJ for 11 years with Sydney’s 2SER 107.3 and back in its early years, FBi 94.5. Shows included Tape Relay, Osmosis, Roundabout and the occasional Brekky slot. Owner of former indie mailorder and distro label, Traffic Sounds. All-round music lover, full-time Disney employee and part time karaoke enthusiast.