Bud Bronson & The Good Timers –
Album Art, promotional imagery, logotype, posters, social media announcement banners
Between The Outfield And Outer Space
I’ve had this record on repeat for months. For the love of God, listen to it while you read:
This group’s last record, “Fantasy Machine,” was one of the best albums to come out in 2015. If I owned a cassette of it, I would’ve worn it out. So, when the boys came to me for artwork for their new release, I was more than elated to hop on board. To be 100% transparent, the artwork took a bit more time than usual. I kept starting and stopping and building and throwing away concepts. There’s a weird tendency that happens to me at times – I want to do a great job for the artist, so my brain freezes up and only keeps thinking “you have to do a good job, man. You just have to do a good job.” So, the concepts that usually come out effortlessly and playfully becoming a begrudging task wrought with long dry spells. This was one of those records. I just love their music (and the band members) so much, that I couldn’t quite get anything out that I would be proud of. In fact, the band almost walked away from me as a designer – which absolutely makes sense…when your hired designer isn’t designing, it’s time to find greener pastures.
But, one day it hit. I LOVE those NASA images from the 1970’s by Dan Davis, and I love the album cover work from Shusei Nagaoka (ELO, Earth Wind & Fire, etc.), so I wanted to do something in that realm…but, a bit more grungy. So, I sat down and didn’t stand up for two full days and cranked out all the artwork for this epic-ass album.
Bud Bronson’s music has always felt like high school to everyone who digs it. It reminds me of going to the VFW for our local punk rock bands and inevitably getting kicked out…so, we’d search until we found a Moose Lodge that would allow a show or two until they’d close the doors…so, we’d find a coffee shop…etc. I loved it, man. Running all around, fearless and angry. These guys nailed that sound (with a badass dash of sweeping thirds from the killer guitar parts from Luke) in “Fantasy Machine,” and now it just grew up a little bit. But, even Billboard agrees with me:
“The Outfield and Outer Space still has plenty of the punky fury and aggressive melodicism of its predecessor”
I’ve known all the guys in BBGT for some number of years and it’s been an immense joy to watch them hone their sound and live show. I couldn’t be prouder to know them and I feel extremely lucky to have contributed to this project.
So, as you can imagine, all of this is Photoshopped. Combining iPhone pictures, 3d renderings, my own stock photos, and a bunch of texture. The initial concept was just to have a baseball field floating in space. So, I went out and shot some green grass with my iPhone all over town. I even shot some baseball fields. However, as it progressed, I really just used the photos of the grass because of the awesome patterns they had in them. I built the baseball field separately because I wanted it to levitate off the ground. Next, I threw in some hovering bases. I dug where it was at that point, but it felt like we needed a lot more…
So, I gave the grass a base of some earth (3d rendering), threw in some planets, made some vector constellation points, grabbed some of my personal stock of Chicago, and even tossed in a wild silhouette of a satellite. The finishing touch was to add a huge, ring-like space station to harken back to those NASA images. Once the aesthetic was built, it was quick work to make a second image of what the ground would look like. So, I slapped some more Chicago stock in and started futzing like mad until we had the imagery for the vinyl insert.
I had toyed with several logo options – including a super fun one that went hardcore 90’s:
But, after a few options, the guys really wanted a NASA logo and a wordmark that was similar to their last record. So, we created an awesome badge based on NASA’s badge, and we updated the wordmark a bit to give congruency between the two records.
Really, y’all. Listen to this record. Go see these guys. Here’s their current tour list…if you’re in one of these towns, make sure to catch them. They’re so badass.
I almost forgot…HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!! See you in a couple weeks. Enjoy the candy crash.