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Nobody really needs to own CDs anymore as there are many ways to get to your favourite music. Working from the premise that CDs are redundant, we approached our packaging design with the hope of making it the nicest kind of redundancy someone might like to clutter their room with.
First of all we needed art. There were a number of great submissions from friends and associates, however Nini’s work resonated most with the band. Her first submission:
The floating city, balloon girl and text layout remained as central elements for all subsequent revisions. In the band’s brief to her, we mentioned cityscapes as a backdrop to our music. Another revised version:
The next challenge was integrating the art and packaging in a neat, holistic way. Considering the CD as essentially redundant, we started thinking about how to approach it as merchandise, so the fold out poster idea was hatched. Now we could have a CD case and poster all in one:
Preliminary concept sketches Ron did to convey the idea to Nini:
Ron’s attempt to show how the poster case would fold, which just confused everyone:
Early idea for CD pocket. Right about now came the idea of the CD being a rainbow:
Nini tidied up the illustration for our printers and presented 2 options. Option 1:
And Option 2:
The band voted on Option 1. What followed was a lengthy period of meeting printers, sourcing paper and creating mock ups. There was quite a lot of paper left over by the time we were done:
We made 6 mock ups using different paper grammage. The right thickness proved essential, too thin and the packaging became too frail, too thick and it was impossible to fold. Somewhere in the 180 gm to 230 gm range worked the best. The final paper used was 210 gm matte, partly subject to printer’s stock.
The printer had some input on layout based on our mock up and art, mostly to do with die cutting considerations:
Nini worked on the final front and back packaging art. After some layout alterations, these were the submissions for print. Front:
The blue text indicated area for spot UV coating. Red fills are meant to be glued. As for back:
Now a detour to cover CD art printing. We got to pick from 2 print methods - silkscreen and offset, shown below left and right respectively:
Offset printing brought out the colours better so we went with that. See macro shot of offset:
Back to the packaging, Ron visited the printing factory to colour proof and took some shots:
Spot UV film:
Some uncut print samples Ron took home:
After a week we received our first copies. So exciting!
Holding the packaging in its final form was a real joy and relief after all that effort. Kudos to Nini for the art and design, and sticking around beyond the call of duty to help out. Do check out her Deviantart gallery for more of her work.
… which we’re hoping you may be interested in.
We have a show tonight at Laundry and another one on Sunday at Artista. Swing by the show to pick these up if you can. We’re also working with a local distributor to get the CD out to stores soon. Will keep you guys informed about that.
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New album digital downloads for sale now. CDs on sale soonish. http://bit.ly/eKqAqs
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The first batch of CDs has arrived from our printers. They’re available in limited quantities until we get our full order. We’re now working with distros to get them in stores. Expect updates very soon.