System Recordings
Case Study
 
I was the lead Art Director and Head of Production for 5 years at System Recordings. I oversaw over 200 releases, often working closely with artists on imagery ideas and concepts. Included in the production schedule were CDs, vinyl records, online/offline promotional materials, flyers, eMusic cards and Guerrilla marketing.
 
 
A collection of System Recording album covers — I <3 Music
The HUMAN Resource was a release compiled by DJ Dieselboy as a label-showcase to-date of music. The compilation was put out in a variety of media: 2xCD, Vinyl and digital bundles. As lead creative for the label, I worked closely with the artist to realize his vision for this intimate project.

Starting with an idea based on Frankenstein, a human made of many parts, I began to collect imagery that fit in with 1800s look and feel. Adding to the layered artwork, I wanted to include special printing techniques to the CD release: spot varnish on the booklet within the visceral, red inside spread as well as a coating on each physical disc.

The finished product was something Dieselboy loved and championed, while fans felt the artwork extended the music — there was great feedback all around.
 
 
Clublife is a strongly branded mixed CD series from System Recordings. As Art Director, I wanted these releases to have a brand of their own — so I hired brilliant illustrator Marcos Chin. Familiar with his work around NYC for Lavalife, I was able to track him down in Toronto. His interest was peaked in the music we were hoping to release with his help.

I worked closely with him from CD to CD, maintaining a storyline and look that was clean, colorful and fun. These eye-catching releases would climb high on the iTunes charts — a feat considering most musicians involved were relatively unknown. Virgin even approached us to make them into billboards for their flagship Union Square location.

More about the clublife series →
 
I was responsible for the imagery creation for Double Blind Music — a new indie rock label. I worked closely from the inception with the head of A&R to embody the look and feel he was going for: something edgy and new. I started with identity explorations stemming from the idea of double blind experiments. My client really wanted birds worked into the logo, so the result was a 2 sided falcon — both with hoods over their eyes.

Subsequently, releases were lined up and I wanted to stay within the dirty, science-driven image styling. The first label compilations were from all "unknown" artists — so I kept the imagery almost manual-like. Bands were explained and credits given accompanying technical diagrams or insect imagery.

The first solo release was for 32 leaves, a Phoenix, AZ-based band. While I received little direction from the band themselves, they did stress that water was a theme that resonated. A rust driven palette worked best and 32 leaves was thrilled with the identity created for their debut.
 
 
HUMAN is DJ Dieselboy's record label. He has a very high standard for quality releases — in both music and artwork. I was tasked with lead Art Direction and began to unify the way the label was to look. I drew inspiration for each release from both the music, as well as the artists' thoughts, and would produce labels for 12" vinyl and digital albums.

While the label needed a cohesive look and feel, each release also needed to stand on their own. They were promoted online and in print advertising, so quick, eye-catching graphics were necessary.
 
 
 
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