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2021 CCMA Creative Director(s) of the Year Award WINNER
2020 CCMA Creative Director(s) of the Year Award [final nominee]
2021 & 2020 WCMA Excellence in Visual Design [final nominee]

Photoshoot Art Direction, Photography & Style by Emma-Lee Photography

This was a great collaboration with the band, where they gave us the freedom to push the creative and let the inspiration truly flow from the music and their vision for the album. The surreal kaleidoscope of colour rolling over the hills evokes a sense of boundless freedom punctuated by the striking photo of the band. The vintage papercut concept pulls elements from each of the album tracks, while reinforcing a more playful sense of boundless wonder and hope. By tying each element to the album it adds an authentic and genuine visual representation of the music. The artistic direction was inspired by the original conversations I had with the band about the overall “definition” of what Everbound meant to them. The butterfly was added to the Aaron’s shoulder on the cover and Chris’ chair on the inside photo as symbol of true everbound nature, metamorphosis, and a new phase for The Washboard Union. But more importantly the butterfly represents how we need to make space and care for the more vulnerable around us. The butterfly is intentionally a little camouflaged on the album cover, as it finds safety with the kind nature of the band. The grass background was placed in the tray to act as a “bed” for the CD, not unlike the meadow you would lie back in to let your imagination wander as you watch the clouds pass by. The idea for the CD label came directly from the band and was total home run.

We wanted to carry forward the brand familiarity of the original Washboard Union logo while giving it a fresh update, and move the brand into a more contemporary direction. The three stars included as design details in the primary stacked logo are intentionally connected by the “arms” to mimic how the trio starts and end their shows with their arms on each other’s shoulders. This “triple-star” mark is now an official WBU brand icon. As is customary the brand logo pack includes the primary stacked version along with a long option for web/video applications and a WBU emblem.

Single covers are a great opportunity to dig into the unique narrative of a track. We’re often working on a set of singles before the album artwork, so I aim to establish a visual style that ties all the singles together. In the case of WBU it was how we used their emblem and broke up the song titles. For Dock Rock I wanted to keep a light summer vibe to the cover overall. I added the large “W” stripes here to give the fence a lakeside boat shop vibe, and the blue/green bar which looks like the guys are standing on a dock near water. The Country Thunder single cover concept largely came from the band and photographer. I kept the typography really clean so the cover maintained focus on the band and I added a stormy sky to increase the intensity overall. For the acoustic version of Country Thunder we used an alternate shot from the fence set up. That way the cover would have a familiarity, and to ensure that it could be differentiated at a glance I made the image a duotone, adding a purple colour overlay to tie it into the purple hues of the original cover. For the title, I wanted to make it seem as though “acoustic” was fading into the clouds in parts while still maintaining enough contrast and scale to be easily legible at thumbnail size.

Date & Time

April 24, 2020