TRCH Mindgames

Art Works: Artgoon

7 April 17 words: Artgoon

A local artist reveals the story behind his album art for Giggs' Landlord...

I built up a relationship with Giggs after he saw some work that I’d done for Krept and Konan, and US rapper The Game. He messaged me through Instagram saying that he was a fan. I then started sending him pieces of work and we exchanged numbers. When his third album LandLord was dropping, he thought I was the right man to design the cover. He said, “I hope you don’t think all the pieces you’ve sent me have gone unnoticed.”

He had a vision of a large building which he said would represent the UK hip hop scene, and he wanted to be in front of it with people behind who represented other rappers. He’d be holding keys, and the concept was that he’s the landlord and is letting everyone through the door.

I created the work using a Wacom tablet, starting by jotting down bullet points of the vision Giggs had in mind. I then sketched the design in Photoshop, Googling images of London high rise flats to give me a basic structure, before interpreting it in my own style. I found it more challenging because the majority of my work is of people from the front, so this was different.

I started in May 2016 and it took me about two days to design. Designs usually take me a few hours, but Giggs and I went back and forth a few times to adapt parts of it to fit exactly what he wanted.

Hearing Giggs shout me out in interviews, and also just the fact that this was his biggest album to date (reaching #2 in the charts), made me realise how many people have actually seen this cover. Drake has since expressed how much he loved the album, and as a result, the two have collaborated on Drake’s More Life.

I fit art around work and family life; it initially started as a hobby but quickly turned into a side job. It’s a great feeling to be able to get paid for something that you love and even more so, people being happy to pay you due to their love and appreciation of the art piece.

I have always been quite artistic – I started drawing in school and went on to college to do an art course, but it wasn’t for me. It didn’t fit my artistic style. I’m self-taught – I spend hours and hours practising, watching YouTube tutorials and asking other graphic artists for tips on how to improve. I’ve always found it therapeutic, and it helps me to express myself in any visual form I choose. All my work so far has been still work, but I’d love to see my work in motion one day.

Artgoon on Twitter

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