Zsofi Szabo Design

Margaret Island is a Hungarian pop music band with 56.000 followers. Their first album was a big hit, and they were looking for someone to update their brand visually before releasing their second album, as well as designing the cover. They had a “find Waldo” thing in mind, so I created the iconic illustration of the “Bakancslista” album.

The illustration took me about 45 hours to finish. The album name “Bakancslista” means bucket list. I enjoyed to come up with details related to the band’s story: for example their biggest concerts in the past and their dream venues in the future.

We used the illustration as a branding material on many surfaces: pickguard for Bálint’s Telecaster, Viki’s and the boy’s stage dresses as a textile pattern, mugs, pins, T-shirts, etc…

I felt honored when the band asked me to design their third album as well. They have grown a lot together during the years. This album was a big step forward for them and they worked very hard on it. They were experimenting a lot to find themselves a familiar yet more complex sound.

We started the album design process with a workshop. During the session, my aim was to find out and understand the individual and the common inspirations of the members. We analyzed the former events and experiences and discussed personal visions of the future. Together we were able to find the common motivation factors so in the end, we had something to build on the key visuals of the album.

Margaret Island’s music is very energetic and it is full of emotions. They also have hints of Hungarian folk music in their sound. In the lyrics, they are comparing human feelings to nature. Water, air, and sun are recurring symbols in their songs. We agreed on a minimalistic, modern visual for the album. I was looking to express the variability of nature in a minimal way to keep the Margaret brand’s basic principles.

We used colored transparent foils to create the gradients and other effects on the photos. As we moved these foils in front of the camera lens it gave us the feeling of the randomness we were looking for.

Art Direction: Zsofi Szabo Design
Photos: Zsófia Pályi, Image Tellers
Styling: Andrea Magos
Hair: Norbi Kozma
Band Manager: Szilvi Ligeti
Viki Lábas’s personal styling: Márk Ádám Takács

Concert photos: Hegyi Júlia Lily Photography