My Secret 7

Posted by on Apr 8, 2014 in Art, culture, Design, music | No Comments
My Secret 7

It’s that time of year again when sweaty palmed music lovers get up one morning and queue up at their local record shop to spend lots of money on ‘rare’ pieces of fragile plastic. Yup – Record Store Day is happening on April the 19th 2014. As part of this national day of independent music love, a concurrent event called Secret 7″ takes place, a blind auction takes place with the proceeds going to charity for 700 one off pieces of Seven inch sleeve artwork with a selected track inside. The Artists and designers are a mix of invited famous names and those who happen to submit their own entries. Surprisingly, I wasn’t one of the invited artists, but I thought I’d give it crack anyway.

There are 7 tracks to choose from to create artwork for (each one is pressed 100 times). I went for Massive Attack’s Karmacoma as my choice, and eagerly began my design.


I had recently been doing some geometric line designs for the ‘Octa’ event in February, so I wanted to carry on with that flavour, and a single cover seemed a perfect excuse.

As the cover was to be a one off, I felt it would be fitting to screen print it – printing being a means to mass reproduction, so a single print seemed a poetic way of creating it.


Taking my design to the PrintHaus in Cardiff, I printed out the deisgn onto acetate, making sure it was the right size for the sleeve. It was, Just.

Next the design was burned into a freshly reclaimed screen. A few minutes in the exposure unit…


…and it’s done! (bar cleaning off the excess emulsion)


A test print needed to be done onto a fixed sheet of plastic to help aid the ‘registration’. As it was a one chance only situation to get it right, I had to make sure it lined up.


I printed out a couple onto paper for safe keeping / framing and gifting. The annoying thing was these came out pretty well. My single use 7 inch sleeve wasn’t the best pull, and lost a bit of quality in one of the corners. Note for next time – GET SPARES!


Anyway – the process was rolling, and I felt the cover needed a little something extra.

It might be that I had been swayed by my easy listening at the time so I decided to glam it up a touch. Discovering that fine line glue pens exist, I went to town. A sober onlooker would have advised I quit while ahead, but I had a vision dammit, and that vision was golden and sparkly.


Almost there, I needed to add a frame. The rules state that the track title and artist should not be included on the design, but I thought it would be a nice touch to include, but obscure them – The final owner of the sleeve could then remove the ‘frame’ and have the finished artwork.


Ta Da! All done.


I posted it off before catching a flight to Texas, reasonably pleased with my glitzy tasteless sleeve.


sadly, I was not accepted to the final selection, which can be seen here

Anyway – Enjoy Record Store day on Saturday the 19th – and don’t forget to support your local music emporium


Leave a Reply