Brief, directions and guidelines
I had the opportunity to discuss with Niklas Kvarforth about what the band imagined as cover. He was interested in using my style to create an artwork that did not include either the group name on the cover, just the painting. The guidelines were the themes of the album: DESPAIR and VOID. I created 4 sketches, he requested to develop two of them and then was chosen the subject that has become the final cover.
First reaction when hearing the music
When I worked to the cover album, the band was still recording songs. So I worked just on the feelings of the themes, regardless of the music, which I had the pleasure of listening only at a later time.
Relationship to the music, lyrics and art
Niklas had very clear ideas about what he wanted to achieve for the cover, and keywords were DESPAIR and VOID. These are the two words that have accompanied me in the process of creating the artwork.
Inspiration and influences
I have always been an advocate of art as a generator / catalyst of emotions. I’m not particularly interested in the technical aspect of art but to emotional involvement that creates the capacity that has the art of opening new visions and viewpoints that would otherwise remain secret or simply unknown. The strength of visual art is its ability to be universal, without the need for translation. You see what the artist created without the need for any kind of mediation. Everything else comes later: the study, the historical period, the context, at first glance there is only you and the work in front ready to open up its secrets.
Storyline and concept
I think that should be good both the band choosing the right artist and the artist conveying the right feelings through artwork. Then, it’s all very subjective and so it is also difficult to convey the same emotions to all. Maybe I think I’ve done something extremely dark that touches some of my special inner strings, instead the viewer tries sensations entirely different.
Drafts and preparation i.e. sketches, drawings, ideas, etc.
I use classic material, available at any art supply store. Brushes, pencils, paper. For this artwork I worked alone, as always.
Band or label feedback
I had the opportunity to have direct contact with Niklas Kvarforth. All comes spontaneously, and this fact has allowed me to give the best. Nikla was always very kind and gave me a lot of freedom of expression on the creation of the artwork, I appreciated it very much, because he gave value to my work, he was interested in my art, this fact for me this has been very important. Even to use the painting without the band name, I think is a very important vote of confidence that makes me feel honored.
Prepare artwork for final release, formats and special requirements
There are many sizes and limited editions, vinyl sleeves, etc everything can be seen on the website of the Season of Mist: http://shop.season-of-mist.com/shining-ix-everyone-everything-everywhere-ends- digibox
I want to say that the graphics of the album was handled by Trine + Kim Design Studio and in the album you can find the sketches of Den Unge Herr Holm.
Feedback from public, media and final thoughts
By Alex Milazzo – Copyright 2015 © Heavy Music Artwork. All Rights Reserved.