Plaid – Stem Sell

February 2021

Design and artwork for a compilation of remixes by Plaid on vinyl picture disc and 28 track double CD for Touched Music.

Inspired by the album title, I starting thinking about how a remix could be interpreted as rearranging a track's genetic code and explored giving each remix it's own DNA barcode. This idea suited the remix album concept and also gave good scope to create something graphically interesting.

In a very unscientific way I created 28 musical DNA barcodes, see the banner above, making the height relative to track length. I worked to give the image some depth and a certain fuzziness, similar to a photo being developed. This ended up as the background on the CD case and another version, featuring just the barcodes of the vinyl tracks, appears on the picture disc. Wanting to create something slightly different for the vinyl A side, I redrew the iconic Plaid logo in the DNA style. The CD album comes in a DVD size matt varnished digipak case with spot gloss DNA barcodes on the front and back. For the digital format I created 28 individual images featuring each track's DNA barcode.


Stem Sell vinyl side A
The A side of the picture disc features the circular Plaid logo drawn using DNA barcodes
Stem Sell vinyl side B
The Plaid logo again on the B side, the same size as a centre label
CD front cover
The double CD comes in a DVD size digipak case
CD back cover
On the back the dashes in the track listing form the spiral shape of a DNA double helix
Matt varnish digipak with spot UV gloss DNA barcodes on the front and back
vinyl side A close-up
Close-up of the DNA sequence styling of the Plaid logo on the picture disc
The double helix shape in the dashes on the vinyl track listing
The CD on body design stands out on the dark background and features the barcodes of the tracks on each disc, echoing the vinyl A side but here they are clean and crisp to represent the digital medium
Track duration is shown in the graphic behind the CDs
The barcode background wraps around the cover
Individual track art highlights each track's DNA barcode
Hand screen printed t-shirts and hoodies featuring the DNA Plaid logo
Promo banner graphic

The limited edition vinyl and CD formats sold out almost instantly but digital is still available (all proceeds to Macmillan Cancer Support).