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Topics will vary by week. Be sure to include relevant vocabulary and analysis of specific artworks as they apply to the topic. When analyzing artwork always describe what you see, analyze visual elements and design, interpret meaning, and evaluate within cultural and expressive context. Use citations where appropriate.
Your assignment is to identify and analyze the use of these elements and principles on an album cover of your choosing. If some album art does not come to mind, do a search for album cover art and choose one that peaks your interest. It may be more fun if it is a musician you like, because you can make connections between the sound of the music and the visual design. Cut and paste a picture in the discussion with an analysis of the use of as many elements and principles as are relevant to your image. Not all of these are part of every design, so it is up to you to determine which ones are present and are dominant in your chosen album cover.
Below is an example analysis of Jimi Hendrix’s Axis: Bold as Love album cover.
This album cover is particularly striking because of the density of imagery, sense of movement and use of color. The element of color is emphasized in the composition and consist mostly of secondary hues that are very saturated or intense. Blue and orange compliments create strong contrasts, and the overall temperature is warm, with the use of pink, orange, golds and reds balanced by the occasional blues and greens. Organic shapes of figures contrast the geometric shapes of sun beams that read as lines projecting outward in a radial formation. Intricate line work in the details of the clothing, jewelry and objects help to create variety in points of interest. The face and body of the central figure, which is clearly defined by its central mass and stationary placement, form the focal point and appear less flat than the background due to the modeling of dark and light values which help to create the illusion of three dimensions. A sense of texture to the hair is conveyed by undulating edges of shapes; whereas, a shiny smoothness to the jewelry is understood because of the light value, golden color and geometric shapes with rounded modeling.
The composition is unified by a largely symmetrical and radial composition. Directional forces direct the eye fluidly around the plane, moved along by the repetition of hands, arms, faces and objects that are rhythmically placed at regular distances. There is little negative space as positive shapes densely fill the scene. The crown of cobras creates a rhythmic canopy over the heads of figures. Its radial design is echoed in the sun above. The focal point is clearly recognizable as a portrait of Jimi Hendrix and the iconography around him forms traditional representations of Hindu gods and goddesses. The elements, design and iconography are a reference to the music genre, and the fluid nature of Hendrix’s legendary guitar playing.
You can cut and paste the image into the discussion and then just write the text below it. Students often compose this post Microsoft Word and then upload the file. If you’re having trouble uploading a file, it’s probably because of the file size. Try saving it as a pdf and then uploading to folio to solve the problem. Never upload .pages documents or zipped files. If you link to a file on google drive, please make sure the appropriate viewing permissions are enabled. But try to avoid this if possible so others can see your work without having to click on a link.
Use the LibGuide if you need to do some additional research. Start with reference and move toward more specific sources such as books and articles. Remember that reference librarians are available to help you use the databases and help you find the information you need. You can call, chat, or visit with a reference librarian. Information on how to contact library staff is included in the LibGuide.
Reply to at least one classmate each week. Replies should focus on constructively offering suggestions to improve the original post, pointing out strengths, and explaining what you found most interesting or revealing about the topic. Remember netiquette.