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A Different Kind of Album Art

By Erika Milvy

Mike Hindle is a British graphic designer, illustrator, and photographer. Look at his work and you’ll see a lot of vinyl records—records as eyes, records on skulls, records hiding among flowers. Hindle ventured into visual art while running an electronic music label and blog. He designed the label’s logos, website, and EP covers; eventually, he closed the blog and label to focus on visuals, but his love of music always sneaks back in.

While Hindle’s graphic design is clean-lined, his fine art incorporates some spontaneous chaos. It’s a unique blend of the tactile and the digital. He sprays paint or splotches ink onto paper, digitally captures the results, and uses the files as textures in Adobe Photoshop CC. He layers those hand-crafted textures onto the base composition, often a generic photo of a human model. He then builds up a piece with Photoshop brushes and geometric shapes, using Layer Blend modes to join the individual elements into a cohesive whole.

Hindle followed that flow to create one of his favorite fine-art pieces, Three Four, which you see here in this animated GIF. He says that his process was “specific and deliberate in parts, and completely impromptu in others.” Once he nailed down the concept, he quickly added elements. He explains, “I go crazy with layers for a while and then go back through them, removing the ones that don’t work.”

Hindle is also a photographer who shoots street art and graffiti and captures real-world textures that he later brings into Photoshop. He plans to release photos he’s collected from around Europe for the past year as a downloadable texture pack. In the meantime, if you have a hankering to own a Hindle, you can get his work on t-shirts, phone cases, tote bags, and as art prints. To see more of his, visit his Behance page.