Music and Design Extravaganza!

Images copyright artists

Join Plugged In Yorkshire and Creative Barnsley at the Digital Media Centre on Tuesday October 19th at 6.00pm for a co-hosted event exploring the inextricable links between design and music. Book a FREE place now at

Since the earliest days of the music industry, artwork has been a key factor in the presentation and marketing of music. Think back to the iconic Blue Note sleeves of the 1960s, or the avant-garde designs created by Hipgnosis for Pink Floyd, in the 1970s.

Recorded music has reached a stage where tangible product – CD and record – is no longer the dominant carrier.  So what use or need is there for graphic art, in an age of downloaded music? Where do the creative, digital and music worlds meet?

Our speakers will discuss the use of design and artwork in recorded music and in broader applications, including: posters, t-shirts and overall branding. This is a rare opportunity to consider how artists and creative businesses are visually presented and branded plus network with other creatives including designers, musicians, artists, developers and more.


Vaughan Oliver (23 Envelope/v23)

Born in County Durham, Vaughan studied graphic design at Newcastle Polytechnic, in the late 1970s.  Having moved to London in 1980, he began working with the 4AD label. Soon after this he became the label’s art director.  Whilst carrying out this role, Vaughan set-up the design company 23 Envelope, in 1983, producing sleeves for most of the label’s roster: The Pixies, Cocteau Twins, Throwing Muses, etc.

In 1987, 23 Envelope underwent a name change and became v23. Vaughan continued his work 4AD as freelance art director, designing most of the labels artwork until 2000.  More recently, Vaughan worked on a number of projects outside the music industry. These vary from design commissions for the V&A Museum, to the re-branding of the Tyneside Cinema, in Newcastle.

Jonathon Cooke (Formerly with Blue Source, now a director of Village Green)

Jonathon got his first taste of sleeve design when he joined the art department of Stiff Records in 1986.  He worked their as a junior designer, on sleeves for: The Pogues, Madness and there Mod imprint label Countdown. In 1991 he became a director of the design company Blue Source and, over a 10 year period, designed sleeves for a number of artists including: Leftfield, Placebo, Gomez, Tricky and Embrace. In 2000 he became art director of, the London based club and label, Fabric. Jonathon now runs the design company Village Green, with partner Seb Marling.  He still works with Fabric, but also has clients such as, Mark Ronson, Sky Sports and Becks Beer.

The event includes:

  • Drinks and networking
  • Speakers
  • Opportunity to join Plugged In Yorkshire, the free music sector network

Places are FREE however we reserve the right to charge an administration fee for tickets booked but ‘don’t show’. If you book a ticket please let us know if you are unable to attend so we can free the place for someone else.

Please use the hashtag #plugbsly for the event and follow @cr8tvebarnsley on Twitter for regular news and musings about the creative sector.

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