1. Hi Ben, how is it all going? I saw you had done the artwork for Hit Clubs new single by the much hyped band Egyptian Hip Hop. How did you come up with the idea for the singles artwork? Were the band involved at all?
I had seen Egyptian Hip Hop play live a few times and spoke with them, they sent me over some images they liked at the time and we took it from there. We had loads of ideas, however the final artwork was initially inspired by the patterns on the shirts the band wear but got taken off on a few tangents. We all wanted the artwork to be slightly obscure, unexpected and like nothing else. So they were defiantly involved.
2. When working on a bands 7'' Single is it important to involve the bands ideas?
If they have ideas then of course, the artwork is a visual representation of their music, sometimes I'm not into their ideas but we talk about it. The band know their song inside out and I want to create something that we feel works with the music. I have worked with all the bands on the artwork for singles even if it's just them sending me images they like, talking and then using that as a starting point. It's good to work with so many different people, at times it's a little difficult but it's always interesting.
3. Have any other bands or record labels artwork inspired you at all?
There are some amazing record covers and artwork for bands out there, however I try and just concentrate on the band I'm currently working with. I get more influence from the ideas behind the covers and why they were created, I think there should be meaning behind all the artwork. This is defiantly what I try and do with Hit Club. Too much music artwork is throw away, it's a shame, I think it's a great canvas to work on especially when it's with a good band.
4. When you are freelancing whats your typical day?Sometimes I'm in a studio and sometimes I work on my own. I normally try get up early and if I'm in the studio I walk to the bus listening to A Tribe Called Quest or something like that and answer e-mails on the bus while trying and ignore everyone around me. When I get to the studio I work all day with other designers on loads of different projects, which is really cool, there's a lot to learn from other people.If I'm working on my own, I normally work from home in the morning, lot's of e-mails, then find a load of new music to listen to and in the afternoon I usually have meetings, they tend to circulate around Freuds in Covent Garden. It's a good little cafe/bar that no one really seems to know about.
5. What future projects do you have lined up?
We (Hit Club) are currently talking with a load of new bands which we are really excited about and sorting out future singles and artwork. Personally I have a few things I'm working on, the next big thing will be a fashion based project which will be out soon. I'm also working with some really interesting people on their visual identities, some new jewellery designers, photographers and bands. Just trying to work with interesting people who I think are doing really cool things.
For more info on Ben Seary see http://www.benseary.co.uk/