Here’s press ad artwork for Sony Music UK and music retailer HMV I recently completed. Music fans can find it in the current issue of Uncut, a monthly magazine aimed that focuses on music both classic and contemporary, culture and movies. It’s the first of my Christmas graphic design jobs for 2016, but is also noteworthy for another reason. It’s the first ad artwork where I’ve done everything, from the photography to the copy, to the artwork itself.

Earlier in the year I completed a photography course, which I’m glad to see is finally coming to some use! The ad was based on an older spec created for Sony some time ago, repurposed to highlight their book-set series. These multi-disc collections are delivered in premium packaging, with extensive book-style liner notes. These are a great feature for die-hard fans, and added to the unreleased music, bonus material and other treasures included in the packaging, make fantastic gifts for the festive season. Artists in the series include Bob Dylan, Miles Davis, Johnny Cash and Bruce Springsteen.

I shot the main image (ironically enough on a Sony DSLR), devised the headline and re-jigged the copy. The thinking behind the project was to create an ad with a strong creative direction. Too often press advertising is given to what I call ‘packshot marketing’. This means essentially a large product shot and a short call-to-action, such as the ubiquitous ‘out now’. However I believe with advertising creatives should strive to craft stories within communication. I this case the story as I’ve seen it is the various product benefits – hardly revolutionary! But still much better than a typically passive press communication.

HMV relaunched its online store in June 2015, providing CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray Discs, and LP records for online order and home delivery, with exclusive stock also available. You can view the booksets series here.

Full case study on the project to come!

– GB


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