This illustration is for the project Secret 7"- the design is for The Cure's single "Friday I'm In Love". Winners of the project will have their artwork displayed on sleeves of actual vinyl 7" records! Proceeds go to Teenage Cancer Trust! Please vote for my design: http://
The Cure was the first band I expressed an interest in as a teenager. I was in seventh grade and up until then I was just a casual fan of music on the radio. The very first Cure song I heard was “Killing an Arab” the opening song on the album “Staring at the Sea” and it changed my way of listening to music forever. I had that album on cassette and I listened to it every day. At that time in my life I was working my first job at a campground mowing the lawns. I had that “Staring at the Sea” cassette in my walkman turned up so loud so I could hear it above the roar of the lawnmower, I’m surprised I didn’t lose my hearing. I felt like I was going to go deft, however, after my first concert a few years later- The Cure’s Prayer Tour. I remember the music was so loud that my ears were ringing for a few days after and it was completely worth it.
To me at the time, and for probably many other fans, The Cure was the anti-radio band. Sure, their songs were played on the radio and MTV, but they were not your typical pop fair. The Cure’s music has dark undertones that are not necessarily to make the listener feel hopeless, but for me it actually evoked a sense of hope; that it’s ok to have a different feelings other than what is conveyed by silly love songs on the radio. They were “alternative” before the media started using the word and they basically created what is now “goth” and “emo” music. If you really listen to The Cure’s catalogue, even within a single album, they are musically eclectic. The one thing that really ties their songs together is the distinctiveness of Robert Smith’s voice. His yelp-y, throat-y singing is unparalleled, and to hear it one automatically knows they are listening to The Cure.
I can’t count how many drawings I have made in notebooks and sketchbooks with The Cure’s lyrics or Robert Smith’s famous hair. That is the concept I had in mind when I created this piece. I started listening to my Cure CDs and just sketched the way I would have many years ago. The illustration also makes a nod to the video for “Friday I’m In Love” with the changing backgrounds and the band acting like they are in a sort of play. I always thought “Friday I’m In Love” was a different direction for The Cure because the message is more optimistic than their usual songs. Robert is declaring to the world that he is happy and you can even see him smiling and having fun in the video. So I drew him, for the first time in my personal history of art, with arms outstretched and a grin on his face. Instead of my past drawings of a gloomy Robert Smith, slouching and with arms bent down.
I am so thankful to even be able to participate in an art project with The Cure being the inspiration. I am still, and will forever be, a huge fan of theirs. Their album “The Cure”, released in 2004, was just as exciting to me as hearing “Disintegration” for the first time in 1989. I couldn’t imagine a better cause than the Teenage Cancer Trust. I have lost cherished family and friends because of cancer, including my Stepfather, and I only hope there is a cure for this disease in the immediate future. What a great way to celebrate a legendary band and support a necessary foundation!