Cover Stories: The Underachievers’ “Evermore: The Art of Duality” Artwork
At 21, British Columbia native Pencil Fingerz has already made a name for himself in the art world. To date, his resume features extensive work for Yelawolf and tour artwork for the likes of Mick Jenkins, CJ Fly, Jonny Shipes and Kirk Knight. Thanks to a chance interaction on Twitter before the release of The Cellar Door last year, Pencil Fingerz has been the go-to guy for The Underachievers’ cover art, most recently designing the artwork for the Brooklyn duo’s latest album. Here’s the Cover Story behind Evermore: The Art of Duality, from the man with the talented hands.
What sort of direction were you given for the album’s design?
Issa [Gold] always has things planned out almost completely in his head before anything moves forward. He told me the main focus was duality and gave me a quick scribble and description of what he wanted the cover to look like. From there, I just kind of put a rough sketch together, making minor changes to the composition while keeping the subjects the same. As I completed more and more of the cover, I would go back and forth with Issa over Instagram, and we would discuss changes and tweaks. Like, originally, the sky was going to be bright orange and pink, but Issa felt like it looked too much like Cellar Door, so we stuck with the blue.
It was all Issa's idea to have it split diagonally and contrast itself on each side. He made a list of a bunch of things he wanted the album to include, so once I was done with the basic painting, I went around and added little Easter eggs here and there. I think there are still quite a few I haven't seen anybody spot!
How did you create it?
I used a Wacom pen tablet with Photoshop Elements, which is like a simple version of Photoshop that came with my laptop. One day I hope to get a touch screen, but for now, this will have to do.
What's the symbolism behind the imagery?
The album is all about duality, and the cause and effect of the choices people make. So one half of the cover is physical and chaotic, and the other is more peaceful and spiritual. Other than that it's really open to interpretation. I have seen some wild theories in the comments throughout the web! I think that's how a cover should be, so when kids throw it up on their wall, there's always something new to pick up on as they grow older.
Were there any memorable experiences during the process?
I do remember listening to the album for the first time and thinking yes.
What was the most difficult part in doing this project?
The most difficult part was saying, "There, I'm done!" because I am such a perfectionist. And the buildings were a bit of a pain if I remember correctly.
What's it like working with The Underachievers?
I love them both like brothers because they treat me with such respect and encourage me to be great. They are understanding, patient, and let me have a lot of say in how the cover is going to look. Working for them is a breeze because I feel like we are all on the same page and all understand what it is they are going for, so there is never really any conflict when it comes to the designs.