Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Fire, Then Rain

(front cover, back cover – click to enlarge)

Years ago, my friend Jason Upright linked me up with a band he knew called The Shape of the Earth and we've worked together on their debut full-length, a digital EP, and now their second full-length, Fire, Then Rain. Working with these guys is always a treat as the band and I are aesthetically in sync with each other. To honestly ridiculous levels, really. This time around, we went bolder and more colorful while maintaining an air of sophistication and refinement and keeping with the theme of nature that permeates all of our work together.

For starters, since the moment I heard the title, I knew I had to put "Fire," on the front and "Then Rain" on the back. It just felt right and the band were totally receptive to both the idea and the reasoning I had behind the move. I also knew I wanted to have crude, organic shapes of fireballs and rain drops to be the source of color on the package. Instead of using something lame like the pen tool, I roughly sketched and cut with scissors the forms and, with obscure but relevant water- and fire-related imagery intact, I treated these shapes to a heavy does of halftones. I had all of the pieces and the colors in the layout for a couple days but couldn't find a composition I was happy with. That is, until I cranked up the volume of the type – and that, for me, was that.

All in all, I very much look forward to getting the printed piece in my hands to photograph and post on my design portfolio. As always, working with these guys was a treat.

(crude forms – click to enlarge)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Designathon 2012

(the final logo design for The Toolbox, Ephrata, PA)

In what could be described as my challenging Designathon yet, we met with Marsha DiBonaventuro of Downtown Ephrata, Inc. about creating a logo and rack card for their new open office space, The Toolbox. It's a fantastic idea that saw myself and students Kirk Beltle, Sally Yacovelly, and Jessica Messerschmidt too head on. I acted not as a designer but as a mentor and general instigator of things this year, along with my duties of copywriter for the aforementioned rack card, while the students worked on designs, color palettes, and layouts. As always, it was a challenge to stay awake, stay focused in the wee-hours of the morning, and to pull it all off in just 24 hours. Regardless, it's always memorable and it's something we as a department look forward to each and every year.

As always, click on images to enlarge.

(fuels of all kinds)

(myself and the team)

(the wall of evolution)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Vintage Advertising (Of My Kind)

(click image to enlarge)

While preparing materials for a client meeting several weeks ago, I stumbled upon this flyer I created for Stan's Record Bar in Lancaster, PA. Likely drawn up in 1984 or 1985, I'm not sure why I would have drawn this – outside of my love for this store.

If you've read High Fidelity, well, Stan's was my brother and I's very own Championship Vinyl. Inhabited daily by Mark & Harris, Stan's sold – just like the flyer says – imports, rarities, oldies, punk, new wave, and metal vinyl that we spent our allowance and job money on every few weeks.

We'd hang in Stan's for hours, talking with Mark & Harris about all things music while naturally playing new releases, new bands, b-sides, live tapes, and checking out the latest Kerrang! magazine in from England. All told, Stan's – along with Sam Goody, BBC Records, Record Revolution, and Kim's West – played a major part in my life that's combined music and design. Much respect.