Hello Andrew! Congratulations to you for the successful design collaboration with the upcoming reggae star Chronixx for his acclaimed EP “Dread and Terrible.” Tell our readers how this connection come about? How did Chronixx linked with you to commissioned this design?
Thank you ! and thanks for this interview. Actually Chronixx got in contact with me by referring to his favourite 2nd place poster, I had submitted for reggae poster competition in 2013.
How did the process worked in developing a design for this first ever Chronixx EP?
It was a very tight deadline, less then a week to finish off the artwork. Chornixx told me he wanted something very simple yet that it should capture peoples attention. At that time I was still getting to know about his project and getting to know more about the reggae revival so with the help and ideas of Chronixx we developed the artwork as it is. We kept constant communication during the process… and that made things easier for us both.
Did you get the opportunity to hear the music before getting down to working out the visuals What are your favorite tracks on the Dread and Terrible EP?
I was already familiar with the uprising of Chronixx and how he’s growing in the world of reggae music. Yeah, I had already heard some of his music… but I continued to play his tunes, while working on the project …. so I could get more inspired… even because the ideas I got, was mainly from his lyrics. My favs are…Rastaman wheelout (best one ! Capture Land & Here comes trouble.
How many versions of the design did you make before it was finalize?
Actually I presented a couple of quick options in the beginning… But I usually prefer to agree on a concept and give my 100% on that, rather than making a lot of options… even because the deadline was really close. Actually I had never created an artwork in a such short time… so this gave me the opportunity to grow in my skills too.
We know you reside in Malta, were you a fan of the reggae artist and his Music?
Yes, I’m from the sunny republic of Malta….. I was already aware of Chronixx and his tunes… even because my brother and myself at Panda Design had already made a poster for an event that he was playing at…. also he’s very famous in Malta amongst reggae lovers.
Tell us your impression of the “Reggae Revival Movement” of which Chronixx is a leading figure? Were you aware of the movement before this project?
Yes I was familiar with the movement beforehand… & it makes a lot of sense… Some reggae we hear nowadays has no real meaning, no positive messages, and very few uplifting words. On the contrary to what Bob Marley used to preach. So we need that back, we need music that gives us good energy & that encourages other people to do great stuff !
We heard Chronixx speak highly of you in a recent Interview in Jamaica. You must have impressed him with your work, and certainly you must have been excited when Chronixx reached out to asked you to participate on this design project?
Yeah I was really happy that I got commissioned to do an album cover, it has always been a dream of mine to produce artworks for music albums… and by doing this album gave me a good start. There were loads of really cool posters in last years’ Reggae Poster Competition…… so i was very pleased & proud that Chronixx preferred my entry.
Was this project a direct result of your participation in the International Reggae Poster Contest?
Yes, it definitely was. As he initially pointed out he really liked my poster entry for the competition, and afterwards, he had also seen my portfolio on Behance. I believe that Reggae Poster Contest, is connecting both the Musical artists and the visual artists together.
Now that the music is consumed digitally, is the visual elements getting lost in the new delivery process? What’s you take on this?
Although music is getting less physical and more digital as you said, I don’t think visual elements are loosing their importance… maybe not everyone gets a printed cd or lp but every one gets in contact through facebook and websites and other social media. So actually nowadays there is more space for the artwork to be shown around…. also the cover reflects the great music the album contains.
Chronixx is presently touring in Europe, will you get a chance to see him perform?
I don’t think I will be able to make it to his european tour, but I would surely like to see him perform… maybe it will be in his home land too.
What is next for you with this collaboration?
Nothing planned as yet. We’ll see as we go along. It would be also cool, if he used other artists exploring different styles maybe. However I would be honoured to create something else for the man.
Can you share some background about your design studio? What is it called and where exactly is it located?
We’re located in an old village in Malta called Zejtun, residing in a small old house which we turned into our studios. My Brother and I form Panda Design… we focus on brand design, but we also create other stuff like Illustrations & handmade signs.
We look forward to seeing your design in the International Reggae Poster Contest 2014
For sure, I am still planning my entry for this years’ edition. I encourage anyone that has the skills to participate. It serves as a great promotion for you as an artist, and even to improve your skills. And most of all we’r promoting positivity and change with our work! Would like to wish good luck to all the participants of this year !
Thank you Andrew! We wish you all the best to you and your brother!
Peace and Love!