Off The Record: 2014

Off The Record

We are entering the last few months of the Off The Record Project. If you are new to the project, you can read about it here.

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.  vanhalen1984

The Model

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.

The Process

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?

2014 Album Cover

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.



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