Last week, legendary filmmaker, David Lynch (Eraserhead, Blue Velvet, Mulholland Drive, Twin Peaks) released his debut solo, electronic single via iTunes, courtesy of UK label Sunday Best. Two physical format releases are planned for January: a triple gatefold deluxe vinyl package, and also a deluxe CD format. Art direction duties are in the more than capable hands of UK designer Vaughan Oliver. We caught up with him to find out a bit more about the project…
“David Lynch has always been a huge inspiration, so when this came up it was a dream job,” says Oliver, who has created the artwork for the double A-sided single comprising the tracks Good Day Today and I Know.
Creative Review: So how did this job come about?
Vaughan Oliver: Sunday Best sent me a one line email asking if I’d like to work on a David Lynch release. So I replied to the email and asked, tongue in cheek of course – ‘why me?’
CR: And their response?
VO: “We couldn’t think of anyone more appropriate,” they said.
CR: That’s a good answer!
VO: To be honest, I’ve been wondering for three weeks if someone was taking the piss and winding me up. I kept thinking that the fellow must be surrounded by people that could have done the sleeve for him – and he had a fabulous show in Paris not all that long ago. I did initially wonder why he wasn’t doing the artwork himself.
CR: So what’s the starting point for designing a record sleeve for David Lynch – you listen to the music, right?
VO: That’s right, have you heard the tracks? There is a lovely simplicity there that i can relate to. So my thought was to try to get the artwork to relate to that whilst capturing a more eerie dark atmosphere. My first port of call was photographer Marc Atkins. I’ve worked with him for about ten years and don’t need to say much to him – he gets it straight away. This was always going to be an image-based, rather than a design-based project.
CR: What is your working process with Atkins?
VO: I sent him the music and the lyrics – “so tired of fire, so tired of smoke, send me an angel” – and asked Marc to give me an angel that moved out of the dark and into the light. Have you listened to I Know? I think it really works together – the bald headed man almost mouthing the lyrics with a halo of light and fire around him. For me, in terms of a marriage of music and graphics, it’s worked fabulously.”
CR: So did David Lynch get involved, did you speak to him?
VO: I had a free hand, he was really easy going about the whole process. We didn’t get to speak head to head, but we communicated through the label and by all accounts he’s very pleased with it all.
CR: OK – the single was released digitally last week, but tell us about the physical releases – there’s a deluxe CD pack in the pipeline, due for release end of January, is that right?
VO: The CD pack will be a triple-panel gatefold – with the Good Day Today image on the front and the I Know image on the back. Open the pack to find [an image of] a small drop of blood on a silvery surface. Open that panel up, so that the triple gatefold is fully open and there’s another flap that folds over the middle panel from the top. Underneath is a postcard / print and underneath that is the CD tucked into a slot, so there’s no plastic.
CR: And there’s a vinyl package too?
VO: Yes, I’m working with The Vinyl Factory on that, which is a new experience for me. The pack will be triple gatefold too. Fold it out and there will be two records – one housed in each end panel of the sleeve. There will be a Good Day Today 180g vinyl record with the original track plus remixes, and the other 180g record will have I Know plus remixes on it. The inner sleeves that pull out will be printed in two different metallic colours and debossed wiht the scratchy type – which was created by Marc [Atkins]. The middle panel will have a 12″ artwork printed and debossed on really nice stock. Marc and I will be signing the prints. There will also be a CD included with the vinyl pack that has all the tracks on it.
The physical releases of Good Day Today / I Know are due out on January 31 and can be pre-ordered via davidlynch.com
There is also some info about the vinyl edition on The Vinyl Factory’s website at vfeditions.com/product/view/25