Echoes was recorded, nearly mixed and ready for reproduction except for one fairly important detail, the album cover. We had been sent some initial ideas (admittedly from our own basic thoughts on how it should look). Nothing seemed right. Management suggested I give it a go. Massive PRESSURE!
I roped in our long time friend and photographer, Marcus Maschwitz, to help set up a shoot to help bring some of our ideas to life. I strongly recommend looking at his work. In fact I’ll put some of his stuff on my next 'yeh, nice' blog. I’m really happy with how the portraits turned out. A large part of the visuals for this record stemmed from that shoot. The artwork booklet, which I know many of you are still waiting for, will contain a lot of those photographs and sentiments from Echoes. I have put up a selection on the projects tab but I’ll add another blog when the book is finally sent out.
The last idea I had is what became the final artwork. I’m torn between explaining fully or not. There's something to be said for leaving a bit of mystery to your work in this day of youtube tutorials and walkthroughs.
It’s a macro photograph. I’ll let you decide what else was involved. The lighting was important but it was all done in my flat with minimal equipment. As usual, the set up took far longer than getting the shot. After all the processes we went through to get the right piece for the cover, shooting this set up only took 15/20 minutes. Which I often found writing music too, my favourite things tend to come out of nowhere and fall into place really quickly. It’s too easy to overthink things.
Here’s the final image that I came out with. It felt right. We had been sent a number of images with repeating sharp lines representing the echoes. But I like the way this image has natural echoes in the swirls and it is a bit more ambiguous than initial ideas. We felt like the cover needed to be dark in colour. The lyrical content of this album isn’t light.
The inlay was made of other shots from this set up and a portrait we had done earlier in the week. I'm not overly pleased with the execution of the group shot, but it didn't really matter for the way it would be blended in.
I know people were asking for a full explanation of how I got the shot and I'm sorry that I didn't oblige. But the thoughts behind it are often more important than the final piece. Making album art is something that’s new to me but through all the pressure of deadlines, not to mention making sure everyone was happy, I found it to be something that I really enjoyed and would love the opportunity to do it for other artists.
If you haven't already, please check out Echoes at all the usual places.