Though streaming is gaining the upper hand, album covers still play an important role in making the music more special. The fact that there are many covers designed by famous artists around the world has proved the importance of these covers.
Aren’t you curious about how do famous artists design their album covers in order to achieve such an effect? If so, read on!
Painting – “Blue Moves” of Elton John, by Patrick Procktor
“Blue Moves” is Elton John’s 11th album. The painting used for this album is called “The Guardian Readers” created by Patrick Procktor – an Irish painter. Elton John is an impassioned art collector and this piece of art was inherently part of his private collection before it was chosen to be Blue Moves’ cover.
In 1976, Blue Moves was certified gold in October and platinum in December in the same year by the RIAA. If you know the song “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word”, you might know that it was introduced with the album.
Gothic Drawing – “In Love and Death” of The Used, by Alex Pardee
Alex Pardee was enlisted by the famous American rock band – The Used – to fashion the cover for their second studio album – In Love and Death, which was certified gold by the prestige RIAA, ARIA, BPI, and Music Canada.
Alex may not be very well-known at the time, but after his creation of “In Love and Death”, he became famous. Many companies and music bands find his original art style fascinating. And so, he has been commissioned to style art and CD sleeve since then.
Photograph – “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” of the Beatles, by Peter Blake
It is widely agreed that the unique cover for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is one of the most noteworthy vinyl sleeves ever. It is due to the strange yet artful arrangement of the Beatles’ photographs. There are 70 different versions of the Beatles on the cover in the form of their cut-out versions. Among them, the real singers can be easily detected as they wear colorful uniforms and stand in front.
Peter Blake was granted a Grammy Award for such a creative design, while the cover gained £3,000.
Geometric – “Gypsum Strings” of the Oakley Hall, by Maya Hayuk
Maya Hayuk is a versatile urban artist from Brooklyn. She is also a video maker, painter, and photographer. Maya is famous for her distinctive large-scale murals. These artworks consist of geometric shapes which are almost symmetry and vividly painted. Her unique works always appear classical and modern at the same time.
Check out one of her artworks below. It is the cover for the renowned album Gypsum Strings of Oakley Hall, and you’ll see what I mean.
Original Texture – “Product” by Sophie Xeon
The art of designing CD covers doesn’t exclude its texture. Some covers’ exteriors are made glossy, whereas others are designed with a rough, parchment style. The more out-of-ordinary the cover is, the better the chances people may notice it.
For example, the cover of “Product” – Sophie Xeon’s debut album, was made of silicon instead of classic jewel case. This innovation well served the purpose of reflecting the rubbery and artificial textures of his electronic twitches and glitches.
Simple Icon – “The Velvet Underground & Nico” of the Velvet Underground, by Andy Warhol
Even if you have no idea who this rock band is, there are chances that you’ve seen this iconic banana. Designed by Andy Warhol, the yellow fruit image is so legendary that a limited number of CD albums were issued with this banana in the form of a pull-off sticker exposed a peeled banana beneath.
As it is, this cover of The Velvet Underground & Nico is not only one of the coolest CD covers crafted by a well-known artist like Andy Warhol, but it is also one of the most creative album covers in the music history.
Transparent – “Speaking in Tongues” of the Talking Heads, by Rauschenberg
With the 5th album of Talking Heads band – Speaking in Tongues, the highlight isn’t the disc’ case, but the combination of the case and the disc itself. That is the transparent plastic case complementing a collage of three-color imageries on the disc, making it one of the most ingenious album cover designs ever.
The case is made of plastic. It may look simple, but it is a complicated packaging which rescheduled the release date of the album due to its production difficulties. On the other hand, the three-color images feature a wrecked car, suburban bedroom, and highway billboard. When the disc is spun, they could produce different effects. You can only see the images when the LP and the separate plastic disc are rotated.
Oil Painting – “Daydream Nation” of Sonic Youth, by Gerhard Richter
The famous rock band, Sonic Youth, used an old painting of Gerhard Richer to be the cover for their 1988’s classic album called Daydream Nation. The simple work features a single candle shining on a dark background.
The artwork – created in 1982 and was named “Kerze” (“Candle”), is said to be a masterpiece of Gerhard’s painterly manner. There’s also a song named “Candle” on Daydream Nation’s track list. The international director and head of Post-War and Contemporary Art at Christie’s (London) – Francis Outred, stated “Kerze” is one of the most exquisite examples from Gerhard’s series about candle paintings.
See how much artists invest in their CD cover? You can learn from them and hire a graphic designer for your next album cover. Or, you can make one yourself with the help of DesignBold where you can find a wide range of pre-made templates available, then customize them as much as you wish.