These 3 influential album cover designers have inspired me to create the visual style that I am now producing for my musician clients. They have influenced me even before I knew I was going to become an album cover designer. The music for which they created amazing art has transcended the limitations of time and reached millions of people around the world. Their visual influence in music has touched and moved more people that we will ever know.
The first time I saw a Roger Dean’s album was when I was 15 years olds. It was a YES CD album that my father had in his collection. The album was Close to the Edge, depicting a lake overflowing into the sky connected by roads of other floating islands.
For me, at that time. Close to Edge was one of my greatest 60s and 70s music discoveries. I was already listening to bands like Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Erick Clapton. But I had never heard of a band called YES. Their experimental music blew my mind and that album cover was forever burned into my mind.
Years later I discovered “Fragile”. At that time I was talking with a friend about how awesome Close to the Edge was and he asked me if I had ever heard “Fragile”. I must say, those times were my favorite because I was still discovering all the amazing music from generations past. Nowadays it is very difficult for me to find such mind blowing music.
To sum up, all of Roger Dean’s album’s artwork are masterpieces. That is why he is one of my greatest inspirations when I design album covers for musicians. His colorful rich and surreal style of fantastic creatures roaming around floating islands and cascading landscapes are astonishing. The artwork he created is one of the reasons he is one of the most influential album cover designers for me.
It is now known that Roger Dean’s artwork is the inspiration for the Avatar movies. His artwork often depicts floating islands and dragons. When you compare a scene of the Avatar movies with Roger Dean’s artwork you can’t miss the similarities.
Here are some of my favorite artworks by Roger Dean.
We have all listened to a Pink Floyd’s song at one point of our lives. If you don’t know who Pink Floyd is, you’ve been living in a hole. I can maybe forgive the fact that you don’t know who the person behind all of these amazing music album cover designs is…
Storm Thorgerson designed more than 300 albums in his career. One of his designs is the number one rock music album of all times: The Dark Side of the Moon. He designed albums and singles for bands such as Genesis, Catherine Wheel and Led Zeppelin.
What I love about Storm Thorgerson style is his surreal minimalism. He reminds me of Salvador Dali, but with a photographic camera. I can tell that he was definitely inspired by Salvador Dali. Who isn’t? See it for yourself, Here are some of my favorite artworks by Storm Thorgerson:
leif Podhajsky is the only contemporary music artwork designer on this short list. I came across his artwork when I was in college and Tame Impala released Innerspeaker back in 2010. His work is psychedelic and has been very influential in my early work.
First of all he has designed album covers for bands such as: Bonobo, Foals, The Vines, Of monsters and men, Tame Impala and many more. leif Podhajsky’s style is abstract, psychedelic and surreal. Most importantly he has an inclination to the occult resulting in a lot of mysticism in his artwork.
He is still producing album cover designs and working for big brands such as Nike for which he has also created incredible artwork. Please see it for yourself:
These 3 album cover designers have been the most influential for me in my graphic designer and visual arts career. The big takeaway for me here is that great music always comes with amazing art.
If you’re an upcoming musician looking for amazing music artwork, contact me and let me help you achieve timeless designs. Certainly they will be forever remembered along with the soul that is your music.