UPDATE: Looking to get an album cover made? This post is old and I recently found a way for you to get an album cover made for only $5. Not kidding! Click here to find out how.
I sat down (virtually) with album cover designer Jennifer Paganessi of JL Album Art (and latest Musicgoat partner) to pick her brain about the importance of album covers, why she is passionate about them and why you should let her do yours.
Oh and she even reveals some of her favorites from the past andpresent (one may surprise you).
Musicgoat: Can you give me a few reasons why a musician would want a custom album cover
Jennifer Paganessi of JL Designs: A custom cover will display your style. As a musician you put so much hard work and effort into making your album and that effort should not stop at what is in it but also create a cover that will reflect that work.
Your cover is really an album identity. To promote your album you should use that same design for a Facebook skin, t-shirt design, set design, possible new website design and more.
Building a solid brand identity is crucial for success in this modern market, and your cover becomes the visual identity of your music.
MG: How did you get into the album cover business?
JP: I have always loved music and art is my passion. Typically in my business I have done more corporate work. While I do enjoy that side I was missing the creative freedom, the ability to get a little wild from time to time 🙂 So my thought was to combine my two passions and create a division dedicated to album design.
It's an art that I think was lost for awhile but is making it's way back to the music community. Especially with the digital age more and more you are seeing covers for singles, albums and remixes.
MG: Why should they get them from JL?
JP: Experience. JL Design has been actively in the design business for over 14 years. We started as a print design company but have progressively been pursuing the digital design world. With experience in both you can be assured that your design will work in both platforms well.
MG: What are some of your favorite album covers past and present?
JP: There are so many to choose from, I guess my present favorite would have to be Maroon 5's, Hands all over. It's just one of those you glance at and think ‘oh that is just a naked chick' and then you do a double take and realize she has 4 arms. It's a little crazy, weird and sexy and I really think it matches their music style.
From the past I would have to say any of Metallica's albums or pretty much any of the heavy metal artists from the late 80's. The artwork displayed on those are incredible and done at a time where there wasn't photoshop.
I also really remember the reaction I had to Sting's The Soul Cages album. I remember that packaging was made out of folding cardboard. Sting was making a statement on how the longboxes were damaging to the environment (this was in the early 90's). The CD package was a longbox that folded into a jewel case size. It was very fitting since Sting was huge into world events and the environment.
So there you have it. Does Jennifer sound like somebody you want to work with? Well then visit her website now. And what about you? What are some of your favorite album covers?