#tbt The cover I did for @lupefiasco’s ‘Food & Liquor’, 8 (!) years ago in 2006. Little did I know at the time how big of an impact this album would have, going on to be nominated for four Grammys and really becoming a defining album for a growing new era of hip-hop.
Meeting Lupe came about in 2005 when @hwmk needed photos of him for LTD Magazine, knew we were both in Chicago, and made the introduction. I met Lupe at @saintalfred to shoot some photos (I forgot my memory card..had to run to Walgreens to buy one..give me a break I was like 20). Anyways, fast forward a bit to Lupe working on his debut album, he got back in touch about doing his album art to which I of course eagerly jumped on.
Lupe had an idea of a cover in which he’s floating in an ethereal environment surrounded by his most treasured belongings. We met up not long after in a Chicago studio to shoot the objects around him as well as Lupe himself. (If you look closely you’ll notice his glasses floating - they were held up by fishing line being held by 2 people on either side of him.)
Anyways, I loved how passionately Lupe cared about the art, to the extent that he was totally willing to completely brush aside what a typical hip-hop album cover “should” look like in order to execute what he and he alone wanted to do. It didn’t need to convey “tough”, it didn’t need to convey “hip-hop”, it only needed to convey Lupe’s vision for what this album sounded like in his mind. Through his direction, I am proud to say to this day I believe that was accomplished. It was an honor to be a part of the process on this record then and it’s an honor to look back on it now and be able to share some of the story about how it came to be.
The lettering on the cover was designed by the brilliant @Rostarrnyc