16 Behind the Scenes Stories About Complex's 2012 Magazine Covers

Drake: The Long Way Home

Issue: December 2011/January 2012

Photographers: Hyghly Alleyne and Lamar Taylor

Written By: Damien Scott (@thisisdscott)

 

There is no surprise in making a magazine cover look like an album cover, but when you introduce the young lady holding the album, it tells a different story.

 

Brent Rollins: "We came in with some very specific ideas about how to shoot Drake for this cover. It was supposed to be Drake's 'Toronto'—him and his relationship to his hometown, which is detailed in the cover story. The cover shoot went awry and didn't happen as planned, which put us in a position where we almost thought that we weren't going to have a shoot.

Drake had a relationship with Hyghly Alleyne and Lamar Taylor, a photography duo responsible for shooting for The Weeknd. Their take is a lot more documentary than what we normally do for the magazine, not that there is anything wrong with that (we ran their photos on the inside of the magazine, too), but for the covers we try to do something more conceptual.

 

It contains the idea of someone holding the cover, or as Noah likes to put it—meta; it kind of refers to itself.

 

After going through the photography they sent us, we were more interested in tapping into a mood—an executed idea similar to a movie poster, or something that suggests a story. I don't remember how this record thing came up, but it is sort of his mood—the emo rapper. There is no surprise in making a magazine cover look like an album cover, but when you introduce the young lady holding the album, it tells a different story. He is presented like an old album cover, so it has that mood attached to it, and that photograph was a cropped image of him sitting outside his apartment building during the evening that Hyghly and Lamar shot him.

We decided to twist it a little bit and make it more dimensional, so it's not just some sort of flat thing. It contains the idea of someone holding the cover, or as Noah likes to put it—meta; it kind of refers to itself."

Read the Cover Story

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