Hipgnosis / Dean / Hamilton
Dragon’s World / UK /1977 / ISBN 0 905895 00 2
This is one of the very first books to cover album art seriously and remains a must for anyone studying the art form. Dragon’s World was formed by illustrator Roger Dean, known for the Yes album sleeves amongst many others, to produce large format illustrate books. This 160 page book is album sized, and the sleeves are shown four or nine to a side, with the occasional full page. They are grouped by genre, and there are also a few portfolios showing the work of different designers nearer the end. Most of the sleeves are from the late sixties and early seventies.
There is also an interesting introduction to the history of the record sleeve, as well as a guide to the technical process of producing a sleeve. Technology has rendered this section very out of date but youngsters may find it interesting to see how things used to be done in pre-Mac days!
Reproduction quality is generally very good, although captions are basic.
You can turn up copies second hand quite readily though the softback does tend to fall apart at the seams with age and overuse so be careful. There is a hardback edition listed.