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Jim Flora’s Mesmeric Album Covers

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James Flora (1914-1998), a graduate of the Academy of Cincinnati (1935-1939), was hired by Columbia Records, owned by CBS, in 1942 to work in their art department, where Alex Steinweiss held sway. ‘Jim’ Flora had submitted his ideas to spice up the dull covers, which were displayed in stores with only the spine on view. Flora’s works changed the way records were marketed. He went on to work as the label’s Advertising Manager. In 1947 Flora designed his first album cover. But by 1950, fed up with his “desk job”, he quit. After a period in Mexico, Flora returned to the US, where he worked on graphics and illustrations for leading magazines – Fortune, Newsweek, Life, Look, Holiday, The New York Times Magazine and Sports Illustrated – wrote children’s books and designed album covers for RCA Victor. His zany covers fizz with lighthearted energy, full of cockeyed instruments and angular faces, the pictures vivid, curious, diabolic and, like the best jazz, find a mesmeric order amid the mayhem.

 

Mambo for cats James Flora album cover

 

James Flora album cover James Flora LP James Flora album cover James Flora album cover James Flora James Flora album cover Redskin Romp James Flora album cover James Flora album cover James Flora album cover Benny Goodman James Flora benny goodman 1 James Flora album cover Pete Jolly James Flora album cover James Flora hipsters James Flora jive James Flora bix and tram James Flora pete jolly trio James Flora taylor mali James Flora sister sauter finegan James Flora shorty rogers James Flora goodman James Flora Columbia records James Flora Terry Adams James Flora instruments

James Flora album cover Benny Goodman Kid Creole

Workflow completed through to spotting. 4.24.04: Adjusted rgb curves overall to lighten image. Made a copy to convert to cmyk and finish work flow.

Workflow completed through to spotting.
4.24.04: Adjusted rgb curves overall to lighten image. Made a copy to convert to cmyk and finish work flow.

 

 

  • Maggiemay

    You can sure tell it’s him.

  • A great Flashbak… 1935!!!

  • just wonderful.

  • Fantasting work guy you have done here . Love your job and always i applaud such amazing task . Hopping you will share such work with us .

  • BOB

    Terrific.

  • Terrific work. It is very inspirational for the newbies.

  • JUST WOW, i mean each art is better then the other, just fascinating to watch, each tell a story , amazing work

  • excellent art here, just superb

  • Very nice Really i am inspire

  • just awesome to see such of great work.