Shooting an Album Cover?

Jambi

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I will be taking pictures of an amateur singer for her CD cover. Does anyone know if this is different from a regular portrait? Is there a certain goal when shooting an album cover like creating some shock value, etc? Are there no rules when doing an album cover (outrageous, abstract, etc.)? I guess it would rely greatly on the type of music...but I'm not sure.
 

nossie

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I suppose you'd have to think commercially on this one. Do you go for something unique (is that still possible after a zillion covers?) maybe pictures of people being massacred in a 3rd world street riot for shock value that has some abstract reference to the music?
Or is that not commercially a good wrapper for your product? / Who will be buying this CD? Will your wrapper (cover) appeal to that purchaser?

Who is the audience? Middle age people that just simply want to know what the singer looks like? Does she sound like a female Micheal Buble? So then perhaps a suggestive Marilon Monroe pose, playful and maybe naughty.
Does the music lend itself to the ears of young men? If so put her in a provokative pose and maybe a bikini? Is it for girls? then dress her in the height of fashion in her genre.

That combined with the music how will you dress her? Marilon Monroe white dress that is blown up by the wind? Bikini and Army Boots? Barbed Wire?

Is she an exceptionally good looking woman that can fill the cover with her face? Add a lollipop? A salute? a pointing out finger.

And so on. Hopefully that'll help get the cogs turning.
 

Fiendish Astronaut

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There are no rules. Listen to her music (especially the songs going to be on the album if possible) and decide what it means to YOU. Chat to her and find out what she wants from you and the mood she is trying to create. You need to capture the right tone. If she was signed to a label you would be speaking to her marketing people. In the absence of those you need to work this out between you.

Maybe she has a specific idea of what she wants anyway.

In any case, when it comes to the shot, I'd spend at least 15 minutes chatting to her. And that's even if I only have half an hour to work with. I get better pictures that way. But maybe that's just me.
 

JIP

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I think that is why a person comes to a photogrpher. It is up to you and your creativity to come together with the artist and figure out what best represent her and her music and the mesage she is trying to put across.
 

ScottS

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I think that is why a person comes to a photogrpher. It is up to you and your creativity to come together with the artist and figure out what best represent her and her music and the mesage she is trying to put across.

I think the calibration of the minds between musicians and photographers is awesome.... At least, for all the bands that i have worked with.
 

jstuedle

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I have shot several. Remember a CD is only about 5"X5". You don't have as much real estate to deal with as we used to with albums. And, you need to shoot with the thought of leaving an area or areas for text. And, that text needs to be large enough to read easily.
 

ScottS

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:lol:
I have shot several. Remember a CD is only about 5"X5". You don't have as much real estate to deal with as we used to with albums. And, you need to shoot with the thought of leaving an area or areas for text. And, that text needs to be large enough to read easily.

Haha records?:mrgreen:
 

ScottS

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My parents tell me that when I saw my grandparents record player and records, I picked one up and said something to the effect of " WOA!!! look at these GIANT CD's!"

I was young and ignorant.... haha:lol:
 

nossie

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I still say it's a wrapper for a product.... "When several businesses are selling the same thing it is the customer's perception that matters"... I think you have the power to influence in part the performance of the CD's success
 

Sideburns

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I still say it's a wrapper for a product.... "When several businesses are selling the same thing it is the customer's perception that matters"... I think you have the power to influence in part the performance of the CD's success

Well technically it doesn't matter what the cover is...I'll buy it if I like their music.
 

nossie

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Well technically it doesn't matter what the cover is...I'll buy it if I like their music.

So a pop video has never influenced your opinion of a band either I suppose? You think the grunge rock appearance wouldn't attract that fan club? Punk Rock attracts people with big spikey hair dos. If it's just another form of presentation that technically doesn't matter because it's the music that counts then why is so much time and effort spent on such things when technically a brown paper bag will suffice?

Technically it matters very very much. It's a product and the OP has been given the duty to make it visually appealing to the target market. Technically the look of shoes doesn't matter so long as they keep your feet dry and warm right?.. so try telling that to a woman. Same goes for all other products. It's the publics perception that counts most when making the sale. The cover plays a part in influencing the sale.
 

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