Friday, March 4, 2011

Artist for the Bands, Helder Pedro, Makes Works of Art

IO "Materioptikon (United Kingdom)
I came across this amazing artist when I interviewed Ninth Moon Black. I asked them who did their artwork and they pointed me to Helder. What I found was some of the most truly amazing and inspirational art I've seen. I immediately knew an interview was coming. The following pictures are all band covers by Helder. Information to see further artwork is at the bottom. Enjoy!
Ninth Moon Black "Kalyug" (USA)
Who are you, and what do you consider yourself?
My name is Helder, I currently reside in Portugal and I am a graphic designer.

Was art something you always did? Did you develop this gift as you grew?
Art was actually not something I did growing up, although I always had a keen eye for it. I was always good at sports, maths and sciences in school. Only in more recent years did I develop or discover that maybe I had a talent for it. The so called "discovery" happened as I began listening to more music and being exposed to various different styles- genres that progressively made my brain tick. I started to develop my own vision over some band's music and how I could perceive the visual part of their releases to be. Then slowly I began to explore my own ideas and improve, all of this was done on a self taught basis as I tried to better visually express their sound through my art.

Jakob "Solace" (New Zealand)
What inspires you to create these images, and where do the creativity and ideas come from?
It's rather difficult for me to pinpoint my influences My main inspiration is music itself, besides the music, it's difficult to pin point influences, since everything is an influence. What I do is very technical too, so I improve all the time by looking at other artists work or researching more. My biggest influence is my own goal and I suppose this is what drives me, is achieving something that is fitting for what I feel the music transpires and represents. This way, not only is the music alive in the sounds we hear but also it comes alive visually which I find very stimulating.

How do you create your art? Freehand, graphics, pastels, etc.
The art I create is done mostly by a mix of media which I manipulate digitally. I have some techniques of my own, that I've developed over the years and I guess I have really tried to define my own style.

Do you only do artwork for bands? How did working with bands come about, and is music important to you?
I mostly do artwork for bands, although I have worked for private businesses, expositions, film and music promoters. I began to pay more attention to the visual part of the music albums I listened to and as I listened to the music I tried to picture in my mind alternative album covers for them. That lead me to begin exploring ideas. At the start, it wasn't easy since I didn't have the necessary knowledge and control to create intricate pieces, however as I put online my "tries", people seemed to liked them. The feedback was very positive and I began receiving requests to do work. As my volume of work increased, the requests and contacts increased as well and things just naturally grew by themselves. I love music on its own, I listen to music everyday and it's really rewarding to be able to "work" with a media that I enjoy so much and with bands that I truly find inspiring.

Tides of Nebula "Aura" (Poland)
Do artists give you ideas or do you listen to the music and come up with these things yourself?
Most times, I work on ideas by myself listening to the music with none or only general ideas from the artists. I prefer it this way, since it allows me more freedom and I am also capable of surprising them with things that initially they didn't envision and then ended up loving- this happens very often. There are other artists who have a very clear idea of what they have in mind, which is sometimes tricky because you're not inside anyone else's head and it may be difficult to exactly recreate what is described to you.

What is the most difficult part about being an artist, and what's the most rewarding?
The most difficult part is the nature itself of having to create something new each and every time and meet not only your own expectations but also the expectations of others. While doing this you have to deal with people that may not be the greatest at being clear at what they want or just be hard to deal with in general. The most rewarding is to see your work printed and the client (i.e, a band) appreciating it. It's a great feeling to contribute to the work of others and establish long lasting relationships that sometimes transcend the 'artistic' or 'business' side of things, becoming a friendship.

Do you have rates for artwork, or does it go by a person to person basis?
I don't have set rates. I am flexible with what I charge as it depends on numerous factors.

The Mantra above the Spotless Moon "Defeated Songs" (Italy)
Where do you hope to see yourself going with this, or are you there already?
I know I am not there already but although I can't quite say where I am now and where I see myself going with this. I never imagined to be at this stage to begin with, things have just been happening very naturally. At the moment, it is something that I enjoy doing and as long as I am with how it is going, then that is all that matters. My ultimate goal is to have the opportunity of working with more artists and develop by taking on new challenges that push me to the next level.

Where can people check out your work, or contact you?
Visit my website or contact me directly through
God is an Astronaut/The Mantra Above the Spotless Moon Spilt (Ireland)
If you are interested in having Helder Pedro do work for you, contact him at

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