Album artwork often doesn't get the attention it deserves. From photography to illustration, the execution is usually some of the most unique work produced all year. A clash of disciplines, the covers have to reflect both the cover artist and the musical artist themselves.
This clever album art design is something that you might find in an art student's notepad, whilst they doodle the day away. Featuring Little Simz herself, there's a few comments on our culture hidden in there too. A brilliantly unqiue execution.
09. Bjork: Vulnicura
Bjork has always been a visual artist – her execution always attacking the senses (in a great way), Vulnicura is yet another release with a beautifully striking cover. This one was created by Björk and the Dutch husband-and-wife photography duo Inez and Vinoodh.
For their second album, Scottish group Chvrches played with pixelation and photography. With art director Amy Burrows taking charge (she's said to have done all of their art direction during their career so far) and cover photography taken care of by Jez Tozer, it's a beautiful, in-depth look at the colours used.
New Zealand surrealist illustrator Andrew Archer is responsible for this one, claiming he uses a "healthy mix of both traditional and digital techniques with no real preference of medium." Greatly inspired by "surrealism, juxtapositions and sublime narratives," this will go up there with some of the greats.
Mixing photography, collage work and illustration, this album cover from Norweigian aritst Farao has it all. The artwork was crafted by Icelandic artist and musician Ingibjörg Birgisdóttir, with the original photo taken by Lilja Birgisdóttir.
Weird? Yes. Wonderful? Absolutely. This album illustration for Father John Misty's 'I Love You Honeybear' was created by Alia Penner and features some pretty amazing character designs. Not quite the nativity scene we're used to, it's illustrative impact is undeniable.
Not only did Gengahr create an incredible album this year, their bassist Hugh Schulte also produced all the artwork for their album and singles. Holding an art exhibition earlier in the year, Schulte's work with paint and clever use of colour makes this a stand-out effort.
Bringing the psychedelic back into the forefront, artist Robert Beatty created this album cover as well as the inside imagery for Australian band Tame Impala. Using intricate pattern work, you can see the extensive work over on his website.
FKA Twigs is one of the most exciting artists to come out in a long time – not just musically, but visually too. If you've witnessed any of her videos or previous artwork, you'll know what we mean. Whilst this is actually an EP – not an LP – we couldn't ignore it's impact. Shot and edited by artist Matthew Stone, it's undeniably FKA Twigs' style.
01. Grimes: Art Angels
Not only has Grimes produced one of the best albums of the year, she's also a talented and incredibly passionate illustrator. As a big fan of Manga, the solo artist not only created this amazing cover – she also drew an illustration for every track of the album. What a talent!
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