It’s 1984 and Janine Melnitz, the Ghostbuster’s cute but curmudgeony secretary, is trying her hand at flirting with one of her bosses: Dr. Egon Spengler.
“You’re very handy. I bet you like to read a lot too.”
“Print is dead.”
Egon’s reply is funny in its brevity and his naivety to Janine’s come on. The line is quickly over-shadowed by his famous list of hobbies: ” I collect spores, molds, and fungus.” But let’s back up a bit… It was 1984. Where on Earth did that line come from? In 2013, the line is shocking in its foresight. The first commercially available cellphone debuted in ’83. The concept of a world-wide Internet began practical application in ’82. Tablet computing was just a sci-fi dream. Print still had two decades of glorious, deforesting excess. Two decades of luxurious magazines with big budgets expanding and refining what the format was capable of. The bold medium of album art took a dive when LPs lost out to CDs, but the magic of the marriage of music and images prevailed. Physical formats are now premium items. Tangible totems in a world of increasingly intangible media.
Consequence of Sound launched in 2007. We could never have been a music magazine. Well, maybe we could’ve been a ‘zine. – after all, D.I.Y. formats will last as long as a physical world still exists. But that sexy marriage of meticulously designed words and images belongs to the old guard, the foolhardy, or the boutique. CoS’ was born from the instantaneous omnipresence of 21st century news. Print is dead, but humans are still visual animals. We thrive off connection. And music, like all art, is pure connection. It’s the images and thoughtscapes conjured when you tune into a song. It’s the music videos, or music-driven scenes in TV and film. It’s the clever packaging of that physical media you buy from a cool record shop. It’s the audio-visual experience of formats yet to exist, incomprehensible to humans without augmentation. Connection is what brought you here.
That’s why we love providing original art for CoS’ reviews and feature articles. We love music and we love the connection between music and visual mediums. We thrive off of that connection just like we thrived off the mystique of bygone formats. If opening the homepage or an article on CoS can in some way echo that sensation, then we’ve done well. In the past year alone, CoS’ roster of artistic talent has exploded. It’s a privilege working with such diverse talents and a thrill seeing every new piece that’s turned in. Print might be dead, but the magic of words, music, and images is very much alive. And if you think the following pages of art are great just wait ’til next year. I’m excited beyond the capacity for rational thought.
Or hey – better yet – don’t wait! Head over to the CoS store where almost all this art is on sale as prints, phone cases, bags and other cool stuff. This isn’t even a shameless plug for us: all proceeds go to the artists.
Kay has the uncanny ability of combining cuteness with predatory energy. Case in point: a series she did earlier this year of very unconventional monster girls – among them a harpie and a naga to name a couple. Classical monsters combined with awesome urban fashion explode with an insane collection of colors — like Lisa Frank if Lisa Frank used her neon colors for good, not just waving her paintbrush wand around like a madwoman. You can see that same incredible energy in her M.I.A. piece and her great sense of design tact in her illustration for Pearl Jam. I, for one, can’t wait to see what she does next. –Cap Blackard
See more: The Art of Kailyn Boehm
I originated in NGC 4594, an unbarred spiral galaxy in the constellation Virgo. My visual output is controlled by a parallel frequency to that of modern musical arrangements orbiting the planet Earth. My interpretations of sounds are possible through combining the technologies of the Rhythmicon and the Spirograph. As a music fan and frequent reader of CoS, working with the CoS art team in creating a visual companion to the articles helps paint a complete picture for the reader and I enjoy the process immensely.
See more: The Art of Steven Fiche
When illustrating for the Consequence of Sound features I try to incorporate as much experimentation and adventure as exists in the music. Some experiments are more successful than others…
My illustration style has always leaned towards comic books and mostly cartoonish representation. But 2013 was a turning point for me as I found myself moving to a stronger sense of realism and more experimentation with line, color and texture.
My two personal favorites for 2013, Phoenix’s Bankrupt! and Elvis Costello & The Roots’ Wise Up Ghost, represent the heights of this new direction. Bankrupt! stays with me because of the mystery of what’s inside (or not inside?) the amplifier/safe. And as fan of both Costello and the Roots, I naturally leapt at the chance of drawing them in a way that’s as fun and clever as their album.
Austin’s art always acknowledges the grotesque in the same moment that it acknowledges the beautiful. There’s a great truth in that kind of illustration. It ensures that no matter the subject matter, no matter how far into the fantastic it reaches — it’s still tangible to the viewer. His renderings of counter culture icons, even ones as goofy as Earthworm Jim or the Street Sharks, have a grit to them. He makes them dark not to validate them to a now adult audience, but to bring them to life, dirt and all. –Cap Blackard
See more: The Art of Austin James
Though I didn’t always think about it, I have always believed that music and images are symbiotic. When I first started as a writer for Consequence of Sound in 2008, I hadn’t given it too much thought. I drew and painted throughout college while listening to music. I created hundreds of drawings and graphics with Robert Pollard or Bradford Cox screaming in my ear. That artwork turned out weird. I went home and wrote about some records, then uploaded them to the website. Then I made some more art.
I have been making artwork and writing for the site for the better part of five years now. It’s been exciting pushing the visuals to a new level, and watching all the artwork from our loyal and hard working artists trickle in. We’re still wondering what might be possible in the future. Online journalism is hitting a golden age for design. We’re excited to become more and more a part of that magic.
The actual trans-dimensional space an album and the artist or band occupy and radiate is what I like to tap into and channel when putting together an image to represent them for an article or review. There’s a world that they inhabit with it’s own flora and fauna that’s there for the picking if you open up and dive in.
I always try to make my work as memorable as possible, whether that’s through cuteness, grotesqueness, or unexpected subject matter. I also like to combine digital and traditional mediums – something I did while making both of these pieces. It’s often difficult to try and translate how I feel about music into the visual but it’s always an interesting challenge. Daft Punk is a group I’ve loved since high school and Arctic Monkeys is a group I’ve scarcely listened to, and that’s one of my favorite things about making art for CoS: it pushes me to hear and appreciate things I hadn’t before.
Little is known about Pantheonicon. Some say he sailed into a storm on the Aegean Sea, never to be seen again. Some say he befriended the urban foxes of London and now lives among them in a subterranean Albion. Some say he moonlights as an animator for the BBC. Either way, he did this fantastic piece commemorating the release of The Next Day, incorporating several iconic Bowie poses in one continuous line. –Cap Blackard
As an illustrator and designer, music has always had a huge impact on my work and has also served as one of my main sources for inspiration. Art and music have always been completely interconnected in my experience. A lot of my work revolves around similar themes and aesthetics. I am fascinated between the interplay of light and dark, and the presence of light within darkness. This is both a visual motif as well as a conceptual one, and depending on the piece, one can be more evident than the other, as seen in my CHVRCHES and Wavves pieces.
My work is often influenced by what I am listening to at the time. When creating artwork for any music-related piece, like with my work for CoS, I usually begin by sketching while listening to the record. It allows me to directly respond, in a visual way, to what I am hearing. One of the main things I try to do during these early sketching stages is to get a general feel for the record and the corresponding atmosphere for the piece. I also like to look through existing artwork relating to the band and the album to gauge the general visual aesthetic the band tends to identify with.
See more: The Art of Matthew Vidalis
I’m constantly wary of the old saying “jack of all trades, master of none.” Maybe if I just focused on one style or one medium, honed all my energies, I’d emerge better for it. But I can’t help myself. If I get an idea for a look or concept, I’ll take it on, damn the consequences. Each one of these pieces is a risk. One of the best examples of this is the digital collage I did for Weeknd’s Kiss Land. It’s made up of vintage amateur porn (all the naughty bits and faces taken out or obscured). I wasn’t sure where I was going with it until the piece was basically done, and by then I realized it might not be okay to post on CoS. Fortunately, it was totally cool, but I was sweating bullets
I started using watercolors for the first time while doing CoS work two years ago. I’m really pleased by the medium and the kinetic flow of the colors. I like how the Paul McCartney piece merged watercolors with my inking style, and how the Postal Service and HAIM pieces worked so well without any at all. Even after a couple years of working in it, the medium’s newness to me gives me caution every time I dip in. And since I can’t ever do anything the easy way, even when I’m working with a medium I’m well versed in like ballpoint pen I still challenge myself. The Vampire Weekend piece is probably the largest I’ve done in the medium, 14 by 11 inches, and the first time I’ve combined colors. It was a nightmare that went to the wire for the deadline.
My favorite piece this year is the recreation of New Order’s Power, Corruption, and Lies. Recreating the classical flower paining as a photo with the flowers splattered in blood was a crazy idea that had every reason not to happen, but with the help of some wonderful people (my mom on flower arrangement, Jarrod Pope the hand model) we nailed it in an afternoon.