You may remember a few months back a post with a sneak peak of the artwork for my band’s (Fundamental Elements) latest EP, This Moment. We just released a couple Christmas songs on our website (CLICK HERE for a free download!) and we put a little holiday spin on the album cover. Thought I’d share…
Now what are you waiting for? Go get some free FE Christmas music! Merry Christmas.
Filed under: Music
I recently did this project for Tulsa, OK based pop/rock band Stars Go Dim. They released a new single entitled Like I Mean It, (click HERE to download it on iTunes) and hired me to design a digital album cover image, as well as a digital booklet designed for the track. Check it out…
Digital Album Cover image (click to see larger view)
Digital Booklet (click to see larger view)
In the past month I’ve had the opportunity to work with a couple more bands on some album cover projects. A couple years ago I did a project for a band out of Alabama called Hello August, and recently they approached me to design a cover for Rise, an EP of some worship tunes they’ve recently recorded in Nashville, TN.
We kicked around a few ideas and concepts over the phone, and as I sat down and played with some stuff, the design sort of took on a life of it’s own – and I was loving it. It’s really fun when that happens, but in this case it headed an entirely different direction that what we’d previously discussed. So when I pitched the concept to the band, I knew there was a good chance they’d say, “Yeah, it’s cool, but it’s not really what we had in mind.” Fortunately the design did for them what it did for me and caught them by surprise in a good way, so we chased it.
The end result was a very simple, retro look, with faded and muted colors and worn edges – sort of designed to look like a vinyl record cover that’s been sitting in your dad’s collection of classic rock albums for the last 35 years. With that in mind, while the design is very simple, a lot of time and effort was spent on attention to detail – subtle design elements that create a retro feel/look, and the addition of wear and tear to create the illusion of a beat up old record cover with creases, tears, and scratches in the paper surface of the cover. I even pulled some old records out, photographed them, and with a little help from Photoshop, placed some of the worn spots from an old Stevie Wonder record directly onto the Hello August design (Side Note: it’s important to point out that I used one of the greatest records of all time – I only use the best materials). Some filters and actions were then applied to fade the colors and give the appearance of aging.
(Photograph I used to get the wear and tear look – if you don’t have this album, stop what you’re doing and go get it. Seriously, go. You can finish this later. You’re welcome.)
(Front Cover – click to see larger image)
(Back Cover – click to see larger image)
The inside cover was equally as simple with similar applications, layers and images to create a classic vinyl cover look. Once the final product is in, I’ll get some photos together and post them for you to see the design in it’s entirety. In the meantime, go listen to Stevie’s Songs in the Key of Life. Over and over and over.
Last year I had great response from the LP Christmas Cards (if you missed it, I did a series of custom Christmas designed to look like vintage album covers). A few of them are shown above. Click either image for a better view. The plan is to start working towards Christmas 2010 very soon, and this year I’m happy to be teaming up with my good friends at Fresh Art Photography to offer packages for a mini-photo session + design package. We’ll be putting our heads together on that in the coming weeks and offering some early-bird price breaks as well. Stay tuned for more on that.
On that note, Fundamental Elements just finished tracking our first Christmas tune of the year with plans to release a Christmas EP this fall. It will most likely be an online exclusive thing, but I’m really excited about it. I’ll keep you posted as things progress with that project, so stay tuned. For more news and updates on FE, you can always swing by our site at fundamentalelements.net. Be sure to click through and add us on Facebook and Twitter!
Filed under: Music
(Imported from fundamentalelements.net)
Yesterday was kind of bizarre. Kat Davis, our manager hit me up earlier this week and asked if I could spare some time Wednesday night to pull away from the studio for a couple of hours to lend my voice and represent FE for a recording that many Nashville artists were coming together to record to benefit relief efforts in Haiti. She had been asked by “Smitty” to bring her roster of artists and we happen to be in town finishing up our new EP. Ocean Way Studio, musicians, engineers, producers, and now singers were donating their time to come put together a sort of “We-Are-the-World-gone-Nashville” track titled Come Together Now. The song was written by gospel music veterans Michael W. Smith, David Mullen and Cindy Morgan. It was a really wild collection of Nashville folks. If you know Nashville music at all, then you know that means lots of country and gospel artists. In this case, up-and-coming artists, veterans, and even legends all checked their status at the door and all jumped right in. The room was full of energy. Everyone was excited to be a part of the project and stand with other talented musicians and sing their hearts out for Haiti. It was a really funny experience, one I’m glad to have had the privilege of participate in. Surely with the names and “star power” represented in the room, this track will sell hundreds of thousands of downloads and raise a ton of money for the relief efforts in Haiti. You’re certainly invited to do your part. Be on the lookout for the release of the track in the coming weeks on iTunes and buy it: Come Together Now by Michael W. Smith. Drop .99 for Haiti and see if you can pick out my voice in the choir.
To be honest, I didn’t recognize half the people in the room, but among the artists I got to meet (and/or appearing on the recording):
Country artists: Wynonna Judd, the Oak Ridge Boys and Vince Gill.
Gospel artists: Michael W. Smith, Stephen Curtis Chapman, Amy Grant, Matt Maher, members of dc Talk, Casting Crowns and the Newsboys, Selah, Margaret Becker, the Katinas, Point of Grace, John Schlitt and Nicole C. Mullin (Nicole and I stood together in the choir and had a really fun time goofing around when we were supposed to be learning the song. She’s awesome.).
American Idol notables: Mandisa, Phil Stacey and Chris Sligh.
Some other big-time producers, composers and such were there as well.
Lots of local and national media were there as well. Check out some additional coverage of the event by following the media links on this story on my band’s website HERE.
I’ll keep you posted on the release of the song.
Filed under: Music
OK, OK, I know it’s been awhile since I’ve blogged. Please forgive me, I’ve been slammed with a ton of projects. Lots of good stuff tho, and if I’m not blogging because I’m bust making music and art, well then I’m sorry. I’ll blog the stuff I’ve been up to when I can catch my breath and it’ll all even out.
In the meantime, check out this performance by Jamie Lidell, an incredibly creative mind and great musician. I highly recommend buying his music after you’re done watching this:
Another installment of Album Cover Monday. While Christmas shopping for my dad I rediscovered just how cool some of the Beatles records look. A couple of my faves:
CONTEST WINNER ANNOUNCED:
On a different note, our contest winner for a free blog header has been announced. The lucky winner is Janel for her blog “Run With Scissors.” I’ll be getting started this week with some ideas for her new look. In the meantime, pop by and check out her blog. She’s very creative and features a lot of good stuff on her blog.