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CD Artwork

When "Live at the Half Moon" was first mooted we were determined from the beginning that we weren't just producing a demo, we were producing a premium package that would stand up within the world of Yes music. The show and the music were the band's problem the packaging was mine! Here you can see the artwork, how it was produced and some of the alternatives cruelly discarded on the cutting room floor.

The Front Cover

Having about as much artistic talent as your average chipmunk wasn't the greatest start but with the help of Adobe Photoshop and much trial and error I got what I wanted. The artwork is original in the way it is derived from existing photographs and paintings but has a nod towards the undisputed master of rock album covers, Roger Dean. I often wonder how CD/album covers come about but I guess professional artists keep their secrets to themselves. I have no such pretensions.






Live at the Half Moon

It's easy to spot isn't it? Fragile has always been one of the greatest rock album covers ever produced. the Fragile logo captures a fragment of the strange craft flying above Dean's fantasy planet through a solarised lens.

There's actually more to this text than meets the eye! It too is taken from the Fragile album cover but the colour balance has been adjusted and its layer is hue filtered into the background layer giving a ghostly effect.

The Background

The "Half Moon"

The swirling colours that dominate the background actually originate from a picture of a gold crystal magnified many thousands of times. Using a filter called "Glowing edges" created the basic effect. Some twiddling with the balances achieved the rich colours on the final cover like dancing flames.

I think that I was lucky that none of the band are astronomers! The "Half Moon" is in fact Mercury but the picture was the best I could find . . . the layer that this "half moon" sits on has been made translucent to allow the background colours to infiltrate it.

The front cover's background can also be seen on the CD inlay card and the back page of the CD booklet.




The Inner Pages

The CD packaging features a full colour four page booklet, the inner pages have a completely different look as shown below and contain information about the CD and credits for it. The interesting thing about this is that it is based on the original design for the CD cover. Some of you may have spotted it on the website while the CD was being manufactured.



The Background

The Dramatic Text

The background is actually relatively easy to produce. Starting with a light colour, difference clouds are applied and then using Photoshop's extrude filter you can create the futuristic block effect. Steve called this the "Tardis" cover when he first saw it!

It's harder to spot this time because there are more effects involved but the dramatic text is again based on the great Dean Fragile cover. This time there is a multitude of lighting, colour adjustment and other effects applied to get the quartz, crystalline effect which is given extra depth by the detail in the original picture.




You can also view some of the other alternatives that were considered before we settled on the final version.

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