Martin Barker

Martin Barker is London-based graphic designer with specialist skills in illustration and animation.

Secret 7″

Record Sleeve Design competition, 2015

Here are my entries for this year’s Secret 7” exhibition, held at the prestigious Somerset House, in April/May. Unfortunately my designs didn’t make the short list this time, but I really enjoyed the challenge of entering work into a competition and will definitely take part again next year.

Secret 7” brings music and art together for a good cause, pressing 7 well-known tracks 100 times to 7″ vinyl. Creatives from all over the world (some famous, some unknown) are asked to submit artwork with the best 700 one-off sleeve designs going on sale to the general public for a set price of £50 each. The catch is in the word ‘Secret’ as the artwork is displayed anonymously and don’t know whose designed the sleeve until you’ve spent your money.

This years designs have been created for 7 iconic tracks – The Rolling Stones – Dead Flowers; Diana Ross & The Supremes – Reflections; Underworld – Born Slippy (Nuxx); The Chemical Brothers – Let Forever Be; St Vincent – Digital Witness; Peter Gabriel – Sledgehammer; The Maccabees – Go.

I chose St Vincent’s ‘Digital Witness’, and set out to visually interpret its lyrics. Picking up on the underlying ‘Big Brother’ theme. I created a series of 7 record sleeve designs for entry into the competition. All 7 designs feature a simple graphic eye at the centre of a spiralling hypnotic pattern. The eye obviously symbolises the ‘Witness’ element of the title and the circling pattern, the entrancing, addictive characteristics of digital media. The colours are borrowed from the ‘Digital Witness’ music video, which is composed of a series of monotone scenes.








Martin Barker
Graphic Design • Illustration • Animation


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