Recently, I had the pleasure of making some album artwork for the cinematic music of AI Ghostwriter. This project was such a blast, not only because they are a pleasure to work with, but because I got to isolate some skills and push the creative direction a bit outside of my normal boundaries.
Doing the covers in black and white was a great exercise for me, and allowed me a lot more creative freedom with texture, lighting, and composition. Besides that, I got to spend a bit of time thumbnailing, generating random ideas as a starting point.
This is always such a fun process, starting with a blank grid on a layer with locked pixels and just putting down random shapes of value and seeing what I can pull from them.
It’s so liberating to work withing subject matter limitations as well. For these projects, I was given some specifics on what was wanted as far as content, and also was tasked with matching the style of a whole range of previous covers, all of which were greyscale with realism contrasted against some sketchy, textural elements. Not to mention, my artwork had to meet the same quality standards of the highly competent and skilled artists that created these covers before me.
This also meant sort of “reverse engineering” the artwork from past artists—carefully observing their technique and style from their final products, and trying to replicate specific techniques, brushwork styles, and photoshop tricks. In the end, having these kinds of limitations was what made the experience so thrilling—to create a synthesis between my existing style and skill set and the established creative direction of the client.
Overall, I had a blast working on this project, and I’m looking forward to doing more work in this area.
As an artist, musician, and writer myself, I understand how important cover art is, as well as the importance of maintaining one’s creative vision and aesthetic. Are you working on a creative project, musical, literary, or otherwise? Not sure where to start, where to find artwork that matches your aesthetic or creative vision? Feel free to reach out any time, and I’d be happy to discuss it with you.
Thanks for reading this, and I hope you’re all doing well out there 🙂