Marc Bessant

graphic art and design studio@marcbessant.com

HANNA

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Season One – Original Soundtrack

From Invada Records & Lakeshore Records comes the soundtrack to Amazon Prime’s ‘HANNA: Season 1’ on 2 x LP. Black & Grey splatter effect on White Vinyl housed in deluxe heavyweight gatefold Sleeve. For the first time, composers Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow were able to put together a team of musicians to work together to form a collaborative score for the whole series. The soundtrack consists of songs by Karen O and Beak>, plus an original score by Ben Salisbury & Geoff Barrow plus additonal composers The Insects, Simon Ashdown and Yann McCullough. 

I was supplied with assets from the series and after a couple of false starts (AP thought the early ideas were too ‘horror’) we arrived at the image you see below.

WOMAD Festival UK 2019

Artwork, design, Graphic Design


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It had been a while since I had designed anything for WOMAD in the UK so it was very nice to be asked to come up with the face of this years Charlton Park event. One of the many things I’ve always associated WOMAD festivals with is its closeness to nature, and in particular how we – human beings – take time away from our busy urban lives and jump feet first into it – quite literally wondering amongst fields and woodlands for hours, allowing our senses to stretch. Coupled with the continuous discovery and eclectic mix of music and events encountered at WOMAD, I was keen to create a naturally psychedelic looking piece of work. My original sketch was of illustrated leaves and grasses weaving in and out and through the letters, I really wanted it to look fun, encompassing and boisterous but something wasn’t quite right; being surrounded and entwined with nature was the correct approach but currently it just wasn’t different or colourful enough, it had to be more vivid and, ultimately, fascinating. I had to think bigger, well, actually smaller, much much smaller.
I was familiar with the electron microscopy of Steve Gschmeissner, having worked with him before on a Peter Gabriel record, and he’s incredible at what he does (see his website www.theworldcloseup.com) and the images he manages to photograph never cease to amaze me; I contacted Steve with an idea and Steve set about micrographing, and raiding his archive for, various indiginous flower and grass seeds, which were then cut out and falsely coloured (originally they are grey tones) before finally getting digitally scattered amidst the typography to complete the piece.
Printed by Taylor Bothers in Bristol, the souvenir programme turned out really well and it was a pleasure to see it being read by so many at the festival last weekend.

Open book jacket
Lazing in the sun

Elizabeth Harvest

Artwork, Graphic Design, Music, Soundtrack


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LP design for Rachel Zeffira’s Original Motion Picture Soundtrack to the Sebastian Gutierrez film ‘Elizabeth Harvest’.

Utilising images from the film key-art and on-set stills to put the Invada Records LP package together. Sleeve, insert and transparent vinyl.

Happy New Year, Colin Burstead

Graphic Design, Music, Soundtrack


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Recently put together the CD/LP art for Clint Mansell’s score to ‘Happy New Year Colin Burstead’ for Invada Records, using assets/images from the film and the wonderful cover painting by Simon Davis. Image below shows the Limited edition (of 250) colour vinyl.

John Metcalfe – Absense

design, Music


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Its always a pleasure working with John Metcalfe, not only do I get to hear his music but its great to work with someone who understands the important connection between sounds and pictures and how they can compliment each other. This from Johns website about his new release ‘Absence’ > ‘What is it to be human? What unites us across time and continents and blood? Many have sought answers to such fundamental questions by examining sorrow and loss, death being a constant faced by us all. Many artists have used grief as a muse, searching for meaning in how we deal with what we lose and our capacity to overcome tragedy. Absence delivers a thoughtful and ultimately uplifting rumination on what death leaves behind, and how we come to terms with it.’ Couldn’t have put it better myself. The image on the front is a treated screen-grab from old black and white footage of a ballroom dance; eyes, smiles and relationships long gone, a ghost of a dance, the joy and the sorrow.

CMYK on uncoated with spot metallic typography

Josh Wynter – Liminality

Artwork, design, Music, Photography, Uncategorized


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I was approached by award-winning composer Josh Wynter to create the cover art for his new digital album ‘Liminality’. Josh was keen to present his music in the ‘contemporary classical / alternative’ sphere whilst giving a nod to an organic, natural palette. On listening I could see why, cinematic strokes and delicate details, his music certainly makes good pictures. We were keen to explore the ‘space in-between’ or portals between worlds, we looked at reflections and geometric shapes in various environments until eventually settling on a photograph I took at Morte Hoe in Devon, UK a couple of years ago; The palette really worked, the drama and the beauty was apparent and so I set about slicing the image up in order to mirror different sections, it had to look wrong (in a good way) but also intriguing, like something super-natural that may have always been there, something photo/graphic. We worked on lots of versions but when this one came along it just felt right.

Joshs music can be heard on various TV/Film and over at https://www.joshwynter.com

WOMAD Festival Cáceres poster 2018. 

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WOMAD are a client I have worked with for some time now, with music festivals all over the world.

This poster for one that takes place annually in the beautiful medieval walled city of Cáceres.

Woodblock print and bright primary colours keeping it craft-y and buoyant – just like the event itself.

The Handmaid’s Tale

design, film


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LP design for Adam Taylor’s original soundtrack to the Hulu series ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’.

12″ Sleeve / Insert / Vinyl