Run the Jewels
Creator / Designer
After releasing their fourth album, Hip hop group Run The Jewels (RTJ), partnered with 3D modeling platform Sketchfab and formulated a design contest to re-imagine the iconic music group’s pistol and fist logo, a staple of all RTJ album covers. It is important to note that RTJ’s album RTJ4 was released just two weeks after the death of George Floyd and contains themes of social injustice and police brutality, which unintentionally but unmistakably spoke to that moment of civil unrest.
My entry took the RTJ logo into an enlarged walk-through virtual experience. It took inspiration from the new album’s final track, “A Few Words For The Firing Squad (Radiation),” where the group’s two members El-P and Killer Mike speak directly to their fans, aka “Jewel Runners” and those that fight against systemic injustices and those affected by it. Therefore this design serves as a physical/virtual monument - an “ode to all the Jewel Runners” where viewers walk through an enlarged fist and read lines from the track. Inside the fist, visitors are confronted with the enlarged pistol and asked what they would say if put in front of a firing squad, just like El-P and Killer Mike hypothesize in the song.
The competition required the use of Sketchfab’s online 3D model portal to showcase the entry. I modeled in Sketch Up and then worked with the portal’s own lighting and materials tools and used the annotation tool to guide the viewer through the model.