Creative Corner with Louis DanckwertsApril 2021
At Polydor, he has worked on projects for the likes of Eli Brown, Years and Years, Prospa, Gracey, Paul Weller, and RAYE. Before his move into the music industry, Louis worked in fashion photography and studied Classics at University.
Louis is passionate about electronic music and London/the UK's influence on it. Outside of work, he loves writing about gigs and hopes to get back to that when we're able to go to them.
Our recent chat with Louis discusses his favourite campaigns and talks about the overlaps between visual creativity and music.
Creatively at the moment, I’m loving anything nailing the duality of nostalgia and anticipation; I think that’s what the moment we’re in at the moment is about.
I can’t stop listening to Fred again..’s new album at the moment, a lot of it has the same emotive undertones as Burial but feels more youthful and optimistic. He utilises samples from nights out and embodies that feeling in a really literal way, it’s original and has had me more excited for freedom again than anything else. Also it feels more tangible; during all this over-hype around NFTs, I’m preferring a physical/analogue feel.
My all-time favourite music video is impossible to ever truly answer! I do think it changes all the time but I definitely have a set that have impacted me the most.
One of the most consistent ones I’d say is The Blaze’s Virile. I love when something is all-encompassing from the artist’s perspective, and for them to have produced and performed the track, directed and featured in the video is quite something. Within that, to portray male intimacy in such an abstract and undefinable way while feeling so relatable. I absolutely love the last pan out of the building too; reminds me of The Streets Original Pirate Material, which is never not a good thing.
I’ve always loved the album art for literally all of Grace Jones’ covers but probably Nightclubbing the most. A profile of an artist always has the potential to be iconic, but the details on this are just immaculate, it’s so perfect it feels hyperreal. The colour palette balance of background and skin tone, the vertical hang of the cigarette. Most of all the extreme angular styling of it, almost feels like a sci-fi character or Bauhaus creation. I do just love images that are satisfying.
There’s been so many recent campaigns I’ve enjoyed working on, but the campaign that’s just come out last month for Eli Brown and Talk Show’s collab Trouble I really enjoyed and was satisfied with the outcome. There’s plenty of cohesion across it all but each piece felt super strong as a stand alone. All involved on that project were amazing too and great fun to work with.
VIDEO OF THE YEAR
For me the most creative and original music video of the past year is Monolink The Prey.
I’m a huge fan of the director, Páraic McGloughlin, and his brother Kevin, in particular this style of stop motion they’re famous for. Drawing patterns in the universe in a myriad different ways is just so visually stimulating. I think it’s becoming harder and harder to maintain people’s engagement for more than a few seconds, so I think there’s something deep and powerful in these kind of hypnotic visuals.
I wish I’d designed the artist logo for The XX! Again with the minimal style, but it’s been so impactful on my life and maybe if I had to choose between a handful of symbols to represent my life it would be in there. Other than personal reasons, its subtle transformations across each of the three albums is like a guidebook on branding.
I don’t know if there’s any one artist specifically that you should follow on Instagram, so it depends on your taste.
I love seeing Carlota Guerrero, Anne Barlinckhoff and Carlijn Jacobs posts/photography. But I love Instagram accounts with really specific purposes – like have you seen Color.mp3's page? So original, satisfying, specific, I actually find it quite useful when trying to envision things on screen. Whoever runs that, props to you.
The most iconic music photograph is this Aladdin Sane cover to be honest – especially for its time. So culturally important, so forward-thinking, so the definition of pop music.