I haven’t dabbled in graphic design for quite some time but ended up completing a project on the penultimate day of 2016. Here you can see the album artwork for Xamanist’s second studio album, 7, a name chosen for several reasons. It has been 7 years since his debut was released and it also contains 7 tracks. I also happened to finish the artwork at 7 in the morning and began around midnight so there’s that too. It was a rushed job to ensure that the album was actually released in the 2016 calendar year—otherwise the chain of sevens would have been broken!
My latest album artwork project for Techgnosis Records is based on three original photographs from the abandoned karaoke box on the rooftop of the Qianyue Building in Taichung. As the name would imply, the sound of this release is tough and gritty, so I went for a more badass vibe with a minimalistic greyscale theme with splashes of blood red for emphasis. All type is set in League Gothic from The League of Moveable Type.
Designing the artwork for Techgnosis Vol. 2, the sequel to Techgnosis Vol. 1, was a lot more work than I expected it would be. The original is actually one of my favourite cover designs so I wanted to extend the concept from still images to motion pictures—still using source material captured in one of Taiwan’s many abandoned buildings. Since I have recently been exploring many derelict movies theaters working with abandoned film was a natural choice. These particular film canisters were found in the historic Fuhe Theater in Yonghe, Taiwan.
My seventh design for Ben Rama’s Techgnosis Records builds on an abstract image I captured at a scrapyard in rural Changhua, Taiwan. I always figured I would use it for an album cover sooner or later—so when Stoertebeker’s Artificial Structures landed in my inbox I jumped at the opportunity. Type is set with Diavlo, a surprisingly complete free font with five weights and several intriguing ligatures that help to give the design a slick look.
My latest design for Techgnosis Records draws upon source material shot at the abandoned Chenchang Woodworking Factory in Shuili, Nantou. This is one of my favourite ruins in all Taiwan and I have now been there on three separate occasions. The photos used in this design are from two separate trips as the vintage safety first poster (below) is now missing.
I have been churning out album artwork for Ben Rama’s Techgnosis Records imprint as of late. This’ll be my fifth contribution: an abstract and textural piece working around the theme of vitesse, which means “speed” in French. The source imagery is original, as always, with both textures shot somewhere in the rundown parts of Taichung immediately around the train station.
The Dreamhouse Effect is my fourth album artwork project for Techgnosis Records, Ben Rama’s new label. I have been helping out with graphic design, as you can see from my work on Luzoba, Orobas, and the debut compilation. As the title would imply, the release emphasizes evocative, mesmerizing, and dreamlike soundscapes, making it a perfect match for my original photography.
From 2010 to 2014 I was a regular contributor to album artwork for releases on Thoughtless Music, Noah Pred’s forward-thinking house and techno label, which made use of approximately 50 of my original photographs from travels around Toronto, Vancouver, New York City, Hong Kong, Seoul, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Taiwan. Looking back on this discography is a reminder of where I’ve been for most of the last five years of my life as well as a broad overview of my development as a photographer. Gathered here are five sets of nine covers featuring my work for Thoughtless Music.
Luzoba is the second exclusive release (and third overall) from the newly-minted Techgnosis Records, a new label headed up by Ben Rama with graphic design support from yours truly. So far I’ve sourced everything from my extensive archive of photographs from around Taiwan. This particular piece features a pair of pictures from the town of Shuinandong in Ruifang, better known to outsiders as the home of Jiufen.
Orobas is the first exclusive release on Techgnosis Records, a new label I am collaborating on with Ben Rama, for whom I completed several album artwork projects in the past. To capture the magic and mystery of the music I used a haunting photo of a suspension bridge in the fog that I shot in Yangmingshan, Taiwan, several years ago.