In a way similar to the books I looked at a few days ago, this CD case for the new album by Steven Cowley promotes a great amount of interaction between it and the consumer. A limited edition of the album comes packaged with a bag of LEGO pieces and a set of step by step instructions that tell you how to put together your own case for the CD. This kind of physical interaction, as I’ve said before, is something I really enjoy in design and it has been used to great effect here.
Very few people can gain a large following for their work over a short period of time, but this is something that UK based artist and designer Olly Moss has managed to achieve. I am a huge fan of Moss’ work, in particular his reinventions of movie posters and his overall minimalistic style and pop culture references. However, the work I am going to talk about in this post is from his first solo exhibition in 2011.
Entitled ‘Paper Cuts’, the exhibition featured laser cut, black Victorian silhouettes of 300 pop culture characters from movies, tv, video games and more. Each piece was individually titled and framed, with the layout of some of the pieces linking to the theme of the character they depict (see “Real Boy” below).
The exhibition was incredibly popular, with people lining up 24 hours before it opened on its opening night, and hundreds coming to view it, as seen in the image below. The one thing I love about the whole idea and concept of it, is how even though the images are profile silhouettes of the characters, they are all instantly recognisable. This is probably why Moss chose the laser cut way of working, as it fits with his minimal style and also allows just the outline of the character to tell you who it is, showing you how recognisable they really are.
I wanted to talk about this piece in yesterdays post, as it is also vinyl record design, however I felt it ultimately deserved its own post. Michael Hansen designed this record and record cover for classical composer Allan Gravgaard Madsen, looking to translate the feelings of his music through the design.
The album is split into two songs, one for each side of the vinyl, each with a specific theme, which is reflected by the relevant side of the cover. However the part of the piece that I was immediately drawn to, was the designs that Hansen has put onto the vinyl itself.
With the world of music now moving more and more towards digital downloads, it’s always nice when an artist harks back to the olden days by releasing their record on vinyl. This is something which I am always pleased with, as I own a record player and enjoy the old school sound that playing records produces.
This piece of work by Daniel Mason for the new album by electronic duo Stay+ brings the old school look and feel of a record into the modern age, creating, as he puts it “a record cover that’s not a record cover”. He says this because the album, which is available in three coloured vinyl sized acrylic sleeves, actually contains within it no record at all. Instead, each one of the 144 limited edition covers contains a beautifully hand printed 36″ square QR code that links you to a webpage where you can download the album.
Album artwork is often filled with unnecessary imagery and information that in no way relates to the contents of the record. Irish designer Duane Dalton has looked to combat this with his Album Anatomy series. With each album he selects, he removes all the unnecessary information and places whats left in a strict grid layout to create a great simplistic poster.
The large central section of each poster is filled with what Dalton describes as his “personal response” to the album. The aim of this is to convey a sense of the themes of the album through imagery, which works really well across the whole series. The series can be found here on Dalton’s website