Blue Oyster Cult fan & artist Richard Zoll is fairly new to creating album covers, but in the past few years he’s created superb covers for albums by Blue Coupe [the trio featuring Albert & Joe Bouchard, along with Dennis Dunaway], and last year he created the artwork for the highly anticipated album from Albert Bouchard – Re Imaginos.
Here Richard Zoll gives the background and the details on the artwork that he created for Albert Bouchard’s ‘must have’ album for any BOC fan. Richard’s artwork covers a beautiful gatefold package with the 2 LPs, and lyrics on the inside. *Check out the links at the end of this article.
Connection to Albert Bouchard… Back in the advent of the internet getting into full swing I think the first time I really met Albert was at Brain Surgeons shows. I would bring home made stickers of my own design and hand them out to people at shows. After gigs they would ask Albert and the band to sign them. I guess that is when he first took notice. I was on the BÖC related boards in the early internet days as “Astro” and that was it. Albert is one of the few that still occasionally call me that lol. I followed every iteration Albert and Joe got involved in and tried to see live stuff whenever miles and time permitted.
Then I got into making unofficial posters, stickers and went on my own private promo campaigns online for artists I followed and enjoyed. The Bouchard brothers, I felt, were constantly forging onward and creating new songs and it was an easy way to feel involved while letting off my creative steam. Once they teamed up with Dennis of the original Cooper group to for Blue Coupe, it seemed like a combination of two of my favorite bands ever and gave me an endless idea well to draw from. They needed artwork for a CD called ‘Eleven Even’ and asked me to come up with something, so I did. They used it.
Suggestions, ideas, art concept… I was given pretty much free reign so in that respect the concept was mine. I was asked by Albert for artwork on the Re-Imaginos Vol. 1 and immediately wanted to do it. I was provided unfinished rough drafts of the play list for inspiration. that is the way to do it unless you are going to use art that already exists for a cover (just my opinion). The design was accepted by Albert as is. Chosen is more like it. Out of several I submitted to him. It may be more accurate to say the artwork was mine, but the concept was Pearlman / Bouchard to be fair.
Creating the cover… The back is a 3D model I made of an ice plane with small eroded mountains. The sky was a photo I took of a storm rolling into the Oswego Harbor in NY. I superimposed a shot of the Super moon I took, and topped it off with a lighthouse on the horizon getting its beacon light from the “Phecda” star of Ursa Major in the sky.
- The front is also a composite. I wanted something spacey but underwater. I made a telescope in 3D and buried it in the sand, and only used that part as if to be windowed under the tide. I saw other works with the cut away effect and thought it would work perfectly for this. There is a silhouette of a sailing ship with sea birds numbering 7 times 4 on the horizon. Those were actually 4 flocks of 7 in other unused versions and I think appear in that flocked form in some posters. Again with the sky and a moon emitting more as a light source than a reflection of the sun light. Also another instance of Ursa Major to the moon’s right, and last but not least, a ghostly, semi-transparent vulture, soaring out of a photo I took and into the realm of Re Imaginos. Buzzardo if you will, the shape shifter
Photos / Images … With the possible exception of the silhouette of the ship, a photoshop paint brush I made of the birds, and Possibly the clouds part of the front sky, I created the 3D models, took the photos, and made the effects myself. I thought the sea foam green was right, and the turquoise.
The lettering… Yes, the lettering was a warped and modified version of a font I bought that couldn’t have been more perfect for this album cover. Interesting question because I spent a lot of time trying to form the correct ebb and flow by use of each letter being lower case or capital, each sized and placed, converted to shapes and then warped.
KJJ, 06 / ’21