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Work / Graphic Design

Darren Oorloff’s record sleeves are art directing the future

Australian art director and illustrator Darren Oorloff gains creative inspiration from a very unknown entity, the future. The influence of futuristic qualities can be seen across Darren’s graphic design and illustration work which specialises in album covers.

Working with both independent and major labels, Darren has a very stylistic approach to designing record covers. However, each piece of work from the designer displays nuanced approaches to typography, layout and colour palettes. The result is a portfolio of work that appears highly digitalised, hand crafted touch.

After studying communication design Darren says he “graduated in 2012 hoping to be a graphic designer”. He set up a small design studio with friends but “one went to become a tattoo artist and the other to create animated cartoons – perhaps none of us were destined to be conventional designers”. However this time allowed Darren to meet future collaborator, Samuel Burgess Johnson, which allowed the designer to begin working in creatively-led music projects.

When working for Samuel initially Darren was tasked with “creating logos, typesetting and templates – but I quickly grew bored with this,” the designer explains. “I became more and more fascinated with by the digital world and the multi-media landscapes trending at the time.” This growing interest encouraged the designer to start working for smaller clients and build his confidence.

Once Darren felt comfortable in a creative pursuit, he ran with the style. “The primary inspiration, and a recurring theme you will encounter in my designs, is a tension between the past and the future,” he tells It’s Nice That. “I’m open minded about the future, but also very conscious of the alienating effects of technology. On the surface, my compositions appear futuristic or otherworldly – utilising hyper-saturated colours not typically found in nature – but the subject matter is usually something recognisable from our everyday reality, humans, flowers and nature.”

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