Already on their third release in just two years, Nathan Detroit have clearly been on a creative quest to find their best self. Mission accomplished. To be sure, forthcoming EP Peace Of Mind sees the Wiltshire quintet frothing with melodies and punchy, infectious hooks, the release’s four tracks feel positively jam packed with killer choruses and memorable refrains. Here, guitarist Callan describes the process behind his creation of the distinctive artwork for the EP.
For this release we definitely wanted to focus on the packaging, as we felt this is a genuine step up with the band. Before I had even joined Nathan Detroit as the second guitarist, I had made artwork for the band, but had never considered myself as an “artist”. In fact, I have only really taken art seriously over the past year or so through my venture (C.Milward Graphics & Art).
With this cover I wanted to make it feel more organic, so I decided to make it a hand-drawn effort. I began with the ‘brain-guy’ in the centre of the piece. I’m not really sure why I decided to go with this idea, but I had recently been really digging the cover for the new Polar Bear Club record and wanted to put my own spin on the style. I also have been liking a lot of posters coming from Rockets are Red and wanted to use a similar bold & natural colour scheme. The overriding message of this release lyrically focusses on switching from a negative state in your life to a positive, (hence the title Peace Of Mind), so I wanted the cover to represent that transition in one scene, as well as give it a “Sci-Fi” theme.
After drawing the brain character I moved on to drawing the scenery, such as “the hill” and “ray of light” beaming from the top of it. Once assembled together I played with a lot of simple colour schemes to give it a “evening woodland” feel. I actually hated the cover at this stage for a while! I think a lot of artists go through this with their artwork. Everyone is their own worst critic of course. However, once I started playing with the detail work I really began to fall in love with the piece and call it “finished”.
Working on the whole thing, it took the best part of 8 hours a day for a week. This is the longest period of time I’ve worked on artwork, but turned out to be one of my favourite pieces I have produced. I can’t wait until the release date just to hold a physical copy of it! Oh and see if you can spot the Squirrel with the final cover, it’s tricky to spot!
Nathan Detroit release Peace Of Mind on 11/08/14. Check out the video for their single The Way Down below.