There’s something about the way in which Jack Hughes‘ entry for the D&AD Student Illustration Awards was both conceived and executed that falls so wonderfully together. As an object, it’s strikingly pleasing to the eye, but is also interesting and original conceptually. Read more to find out how a tragic loss brought out a deeper meaning in the project and an added sentiment for Jack.
“A direct response to the D&AD Student Illustration Awards brief, which was to interpret two tracks by the same artist in an innovative manner. I chose two tracks from Broadcast’s 2005 album ‘Tender Buttons’, the tracks, being ‘I Found the F’ and ‘I Found the End’, mark the album as bookends, the former opens the album whereas the latter closes it.
Not long before the brief was set, the lead singer, Trish Keenan, died of pneumonia after complications from contracting the swine flu virus. Not only did this spur me on to push the boundaries of how I normally worked, it suddenly made the tracks I chose much more poignant and personal.”
“I chose the object of a synthesiser because for me it’s synonymous with Broadcast’s sound and image. I wanted the synth to look organic as their music is comprised of both the digital and the analogue in an unusual and yet distinctive way. The interface was key to the success of the project, I wanted it to look retro but modernist, colourful yet considered, I wanted it to look playable but incomprehensible and totally bizarre at the same time.
Most traces of a traditional synthesiser are lost and instead replaced with strange dials and weird buttons, odd images full of nostalgia. The synth is a response to the first track, ‘I Found the F’.”
“It seemed only natural to include an instruction manual to work alongside the synth, ‘I Found the End’, represents death and loss, it stands as a shadow of its former; no lyrics are sung, the only noise heard is a slowed down instrumental loop taken from ‘I Found the F’. The manual features imagery from the synth, altered and redesigned to work with and also against the synth, the words are cut out as there are no lyrics in this song, yet it still hints to something that once was.”
© Jack Hughes, 2011.