Kisschasy: United Paper People Cover

Normally we wouldn’t post two album covers for the same band so close together but it just so happens I was sent supporting artwork for both covers at the same time and they are both uniquely different. They are both Aussie two which means that many of you might not have seen these covers.

This is actually Kisschasy’s first album so we’re posting these in reverse chronological order.

I was lucky enough to catch the designers David & Aaron talk at Semi Permanent Sydney and they took everyone through a few of their favourite projects. Kisschasy’s United Paper People was one of them.

The detail in the cover is amazing. David spoke about how the artwork was actually a water colour painting and then treated to look like an oil painting. It’s an amazing looking piece. Here’s a 100% crop to show the amount of work that went into it.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Cover Crop

Below is a series of slides they showed documenting their process. I’ve tried to leave these as big as possible.

This was the initial sketch book they had after the first meeting. They noted that they went down the literal sense initially “paper cut-outs of people” but moved away from that quickly. They didn’t have an explanation of how they stumbled into the idea of the hot air balloon but once they did they stuck to it.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Initial Sketchbook
Kisschasy: United Paper People Initial ideas
Kisschasy: United Paper People Balloon sketch 1
Kisschasy: United Paper People Balloon sketch 2
Kisschasy: United Paper People Colour Tests

It’s interesting to see the process and how the artwork evolved.

Debaser also mentioned that when the initial designs were presented to the label there was talk about trying to make the band’s name larger and easier to read (ie ruining the atheistic) luckily the designers won that battle although when in the shops a large sticker was placed in the top left with the bands name and album details.

Here’s the actual CD slip and disc label.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Disc label

The album cover was just one of many artworks created for the album. The amount of work produced for this is quite overwhelming. Below are the pages of the booklet. Each one more work than some covers receive in isolation.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 1
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 2
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 3
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 3 Fold
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 4
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page  5
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 6
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page Fold

How’s your scrolling finger? Tired…. I’m getting woozy just uploading this much artwork and we’re only half way. Let’s press with the singles artwork.

Now if it was me I would have just kept a few of these beauties and used them for singles. But Debaser went ahead and produced 6 more artworks for the three singles off the album. Here’s the single cover and the insid spread.

Kisschasy: Do-Do’s & Whoa-Oh’s
Kisschasy: Do-Do’s & Whoa-Oh’s Spread

Debaser explained that this cover for “The Shake” is for the most laid back song on the album yet the cover depicts a violent tornado.

Kisschasy: The Shake
Kisschasy: The Shake Spread

Kisschasy: Face without a name
Kisschasy: Face without a name Spread

Those of you who think this looks familiar might be aware that a US based band Circa Survive’s 2007 album “On Letting Go” seems to have been “inspired” by United Paper People with a little dash of the Hymns album.

Circa Survive On Letting Go

I’ll let you all be the judge if this is a rip but keep this in mind.

The artist Esao Andrews actually has some very creative work in his portfolio and the old version of his site from 2003-2005 features a hot air balloon as it’s loader. Check the site BTW as it’s quite nice. The girl flipping her dress is charming.

Esao Loader Balloon

He’s also done a T-shirt for “TV on the Radio” (from the same band naming class as “Panic at the Disco”) which features a balloon. Although this would have been done post 2005.

TV on the Radio Balloon shirt
TV on the Radio Balloon shirt

The band could have simply made ill-informed artwork decision? Although the type treatment and ornate frame though don’t help their case much.

Here’s the other painting from the series by Esao Andrews titled “Other Half of Letting Go”

Esao Andrews: “Other Half of Letting Go”

That said, it might be safe to say that Kisschasy and Circa Survive are the same band? Check these two photos and tell me which is which. Hint: Circa has 5 members :)

Kisschasy vs Circa Survive

Sorry to end on such a negative note. I hope this post has given everyone a better insight into the album and also the process involved in creating an albums artistic direction. I don’t even want to speculate the amount of hours involved in the entire process or who much was done for the “pitch stage” before any money changed hands.

Kisschasy: United Paper People

Kisschasy: United Paper People Cover

Normally we wouldn’t post two album covers for the same band so close together but it just so happens I was sent supporting artwork for both covers at the same time and they are both uniquely different. They are both Aussie two which means that many of you might not have seen these covers.

This is actually Kisschasy’s first album so we’re posting these in reverse chronological order.

I was lucky enough to catch the designers David & Aaron talk at Semi Permanent Sydney and they took everyone through a few of their favourite projects. Kisschasy’s United Paper People was one of them.

The detail in the cover is amazing. David spoke about how the artwork was actually a water colour painting and then treated to look like an oil painting. It’s an amazing looking piece. Here’s a 100% crop to show the amount of work that went into it.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Cover Crop

Below is a series of slides they showed documenting their process. I’ve tried to leave these as big as possible.

This was the initial sketch book they had after the first meeting. They noted that they went down the literal sense initially “paper cut-outs of people” but moved away from that quickly. They didn’t have an explanation of how they stumbled into the idea of the hot air balloon but once they did they stuck to it.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Initial Sketchbook
Kisschasy: United Paper People Initial ideas
Kisschasy: United Paper People Balloon sketch 1
Kisschasy: United Paper People Balloon sketch 2
Kisschasy: United Paper People Colour Tests

It’s interesting to see the process and how the artwork evolved.

Debaser also mentioned that when the initial designs were presented to the label there was talk about trying to make the band’s name larger and easier to read (ie ruining the atheistic) luckily the designers won that battle although when in the shops a large sticker was placed in the top left with the bands name and album details.

Here’s the actual CD slip and disc label.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Disc label

The album cover was just one of many artworks created for the album. The amount of work produced for this is quite overwhelming. Below are the pages of the booklet. Each one more work than some covers receive in isolation.

Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 1
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 2
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 3
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 3 Fold
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 4
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page  5
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page 6
Kisschasy: United Paper People Booklet Page Fold

How’s your scrolling finger? Tired…. I’m getting woozy just uploading this much artwork and we’re only half way. Let’s press with the singles artwork.

Now if it was me I would have just kept a few of these beauties and used them for singles. But Debaser went ahead and produced 6 more artworks for the three singles off the album. Here’s the single cover and the insid spread.

Kisschasy: Do-Do’s & Whoa-Oh’s
Kisschasy: Do-Do’s & Whoa-Oh’s Spread

Debaser explained that this cover for “The Shake” is for the most laid back song on the album yet the cover depicts a violent tornado.

Kisschasy: The Shake
Kisschasy: The Shake Spread

Kisschasy: Face without a name
Kisschasy: Face without a name Spread

Those of you who think this looks familiar might be aware that a US based band Circa Survive’s 2007 album “On Letting Go” seems to have been “inspired” by United Paper People with a little dash of the Hymns album.

Circa Survive On Letting Go

I’ll let you all be the judge if this is a rip but keep this in mind.

The artist Esao Andrews actually has some very creative work in his portfolio and the old version of his site from 2003-2005 features a hot air balloon as it’s loader. Check the site BTW as it’s quite nice. The girl flipping her dress is charming.

Esao Loader Balloon

He’s also done a T-shirt for “TV on the Radio” (from the same band naming class as “Panic at the Disco”) which features a balloon. Although this would have been done post 2005.

TV on the Radio Balloon shirt
TV on the Radio Balloon shirt

The band could have simply made ill-informed artwork decision? Although the type treatment and ornate frame though don’t help their case much.

Here’s the other painting from the series by Esao Andrews titled “Other Half of Letting Go”

Esao Andrews: “Other Half of Letting Go”

That said, it might be safe to say that Kisschasy and Circa Survive are the same band? Check these two photos and tell me which is which. Hint: Circa has 5 members :)

Kisschasy vs Circa Survive

Sorry to end on such a negative note. I hope this post has given everyone a better insight into the album and also the process involved in creating an albums artistic direction. I don’t even want to speculate the amount of hours involved in the entire process or who much was done for the “pitch stage” before any money changed hands.





26 Comments

  1. Wow – I might buy this album just for all that awesome artwork.

    I love the painted look. Its a style that I think was also done really well on The Avalanches album cover.

  2. i love these good articles with sketches and stuff! woho!

  3. this is killer album artwork. I wouldn’t say esao took their idea at all. That guy is so incredibly talented. Lots of people have the same ideas or variations of the same ideas. The two albums arn’t even the same. One is just a hot air balloon flying around and the other is the girl. Very different. And about them being the same band sure they look the same (but what band doesn’t these days, haha) but the sound is entirely different.

  4. Yeah, loving the sketches, particularly the notes around them.

    I don’t think it ends on a negative note, as much as it ends on an editorially responsible note. These things should be pointed out, and more so if they’re presented with a neutral and fair tone, as you have done in this case. The similarities are remarkably unignorable.

    Thanks for doing all the homework. And thanks for such a great site. I’m addicted to your feed!

  5. totally awesome process work.
    i love to see when people actually take time to think about developing art rather than just slapping something together. totally awesome.

  6. This is amazing artwork. It makes me want to check out Kisschasy, though I can’t imagine their music will live up to their artwork.

    I’ve been an Esao Andrews fan for nearly a decade. Whether or not he was inspired by this art, his balloon pieces are completely in line with his style and his body of work. I’d hardly call his balloons a rip-off, though I’m admittedly biased.

  7. Oh, and your ending was really funny. Even the ski caps match.

  8. hey, thanks for posting our work, and thanks for the comments. just want to clarify something… I really don’t think the Esao work or TV on the Radio stuff is in any way ripped off or even inspired by our work. Balloons have been used in imagery and art forever, and we’re certainly not the first to like the aesthetic of them, and we won’t be the last. cool images are cool images. I really like Esao’s work, his paintings are really beautiful, you should check them out. cheers – Dave & Az debaser

  9. this website is class, were doin a project in graphics on cd design so this is an ace resource, Its top the way they show all the development shots, WOOOO.

  10. amazingly beautiful artwork .. very inspiring ..
    great website too!! thumbs up //

  11. This is very, very, very pretty. Top notch. Wish I had the budgets for it!

  12. (or the love of a client for it!)

  13. I’m Aussie and Kisschasy is relatively big here..they live up to their awsome album art, with a clean alternative rock sound..really worth checking out. I think I’m going to go with….Circa ripping off Kisschasy!! as this seems to happen a lot with Oz underdog bands..eg Oz band the Saints were playing punk sounds years before the Ramones popularised it.

  14. oops didn’t realise this was actually an aussie site..ANYWAY feature some more aussie band covers eg Dead Letter Circus..also MGMT (although from New York) have a cool cover and great experimental sound : )

  15. Yep… impressive stuff.

    Always liked this artwork.

  16. well my name is joel, and i actually play in the band kisschasy. David and Aaron and 2 brilliant artists and being a hobby designer myself am truely appriciative. And i may also let you know that they did this on a basically nothing budget, and what they did for the money was nothing short of amazing. I believe the balloon was an idea of ours, and we also gave them the book animalia as a reference! Great to see so much enthusiasm for the art. And no, we don’t live up to our art!!! ;)

  17. not a big fan of the band but dig the artwork. very reminiscent of stuff like William Turner which you don’t see alot in album art (apart from the excellent Avalanches cover that is). interesting to read that Animalia was a reference too – Graeme Base is a great illustrator.

    in my opinion the Circa Survive cover looks far to much like an emo cliche.

    great website here btw.

  18. Hey, I love the site, but could you please learn the distinction between “its” and “it’s”? It’s an ugly stain on an otherwise lovely blog and its generally readable posts.

  19. Hey Jet

    fair call. I got a C in English and have always been a lazy proof reader.

  20. Big fan of the album art…
    Does anyone know what this style of art/illustration is? or any other similar works? besides the circa survive? Other designers or artists who’ve done similar work or similar aesthetics?

    Cheers.

  21. except for the fact that kisschasy absolutely suck.

  22. you are haters. circa is the amazing. dont hate if you dont listen to them.

    tools

  23. Circa Survive’s latest release Blue Sky Noise out 4.20.10 is so sick

    Illumina Records all area Access

    http://illuminaallareaaccess.com/index.php?opti

  24. absolutely amazing work!!!

  25. The next time I read a blog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me as much as this one. I mean, I know it was my choice to read, but I actually thought youd have something interesting to say.

  26. The amount of ignorance in the article is just…disappointing. Having just listened to a couple of Kisschasy songs, I can say, with the utmost certainty, that the two bands are nothing alike. To compare the two bands simply on their choice of album art is just dumb. You compared the two based on the fact that both covers have hot air balloons? No.

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