Off The Record
Back To The 80s
The latest addition to the series is one of the most-recognized album covers from the 80s – Van Halen’s iconic 1984. The album went to #2 on the Billboard charts and remained there for five weeks! Any guesses which album held the #1 spot?
The famous smoking Cherub was created by artist Margo Nahas. Anyone who grew up in the 80s will instantly recognize this image. It was not without controversy – in fact, it was censored in the UK with a sticker covering the cigarette.
I’ve been wanting to do this album cover since the beginning of the project. When I saw Christopher with his curly blonde locks, I knew he was the perfect model. The only remaining obstacle was to get him into such an unusual pose- and keep him from eating the candy cigarette. After a little trial and error, we finally got the shot.
Once the photographic images was arranged and composited, the next task was to get the painterly feel of the image. I played with the textures by dodging and burning, then applying some paint strokes in Photoshop. It took several blended layers to achieve the look I wanted – somewhere between a painting and a photograph.
It was truly amazing to watch the image evolve from a shot of a child to this full-fledged “fallen angel” image. I think we got pretty close to the original look, but still managed to give it a little bit of modified, up-to-date feel. What do you think?
Who Is Next?
We still have a couple of album spots still open. If you have a concept in mind, let me know – but don’t wait. The show is right around the corner, so I have to finish up the image-making in the next couple of months.