Storm Thorgerson has been designing album cover art for over 35 years. Thorgerson was a key member of the British graphic art group Hipgnosis, and designed many of their most famous single and album covers. Perhaps Storm Thorgerson’s most famous designs are those for Pink Floyd as his design for The Dark Side of the Moon has been called one of the greatest album covers of all time.
Many of Storm Thorgerson’s designs are notable for their surreal elements as he often places objects out of their traditional contexts, especially with vast spaces around them, to give them an awkward appearance while highlighting their beauty.
Storm Thorgerson’s surrealist work raised the bar for album cover designs, changing the way the world looked at the music of everyone from Peter Gabriel to Black Sabbath.
Born in Dartford, Kent in 1944, Storm Thorgerson went to school with Roger Waters and Syd Barrett. He studied English and Philosophy at university before going on to complete an MA in Film and Television at the Royal College of Art.
His career as an artist began accidentally; around the time of his graduation from the Royal College Pink Floyd were completing their second album A Saucerful of Secrets, when a friend turned down the job of creating its sleeve. With no background in art or graphic design Storm Thorgerson volunteered to step into the fold.
Along with his friend Aubrey Powell he set up the British graphic art group Hipgnosis in 1968, they specialised in creative photography for album covers. Many of Storm Thorgerson’s album covers were designed before the advent of advanced computer design software, and were created through the use of photography, paint and sculpture.
Storm Thorgerson has worked with many bands over the years including 10cc, Anthrax, Catherine Wheel, Biffy Clyro, The Cranberries, Bruce Dickinson, Dream Theater, Ian Dury and The Blockheads, Europe, Genesis, David Gilmour, Led Zeppelin, Steve Miller Band, Muse, Offspring, Alan Parsons, Pendulum, Pink Floyd, The Mars Volta, Yes and Paul Young. There are several publications based on the work of Storm Thorgerson including 100 Best Album Covers and Taken By Storm, The Album Art of Storm Thorgerson.