The front cover re mastered in 2023 Proof of the back cover without the final track listingsHag took the photograph of Royal Street, Rochdale, Lancashire UK on the 6th September 1976. Viewing Royal Street June 2012.
The cover was designed by David Costa of ‘Jubilee Graphics’ which later became ‘Wherefore Art’. All photographs by Hag. The foreground contains figures made from picture library slides of obscure classical paintings (for copyright reasons). Hag created the cover photograph from the 9th to 13th December 1982 in black & white. Kim Harris then hand tinted the image completing the work on 19th January 1983. The gold frame was then composited using transparency material by Studio 10 London UK.
Hag photographed the gold frame and picture frame back and supervised the colour composite adding the gold frame and engraved titles to the image. The back of the frame was photographed three times as the final track listings kept changing (see Wikipedia). The third time a blank panel was made as shown above so the track list could be added at the print stage in case of further changes.
Wikipedia ‘ELO Secret Messages’ Album Page.
The background street was later re- worked by Hag for a calendar entitled ‘The Future’. Colour & Black & White versions of this image entitled ‘The futures a bit fishy we’ve got a hand in it’ are found here. This image Hag created after making the Electric Light Orchestra cover.
The ELO record cover is not found in Hags book book ‘How Things Are’
Combination print created by Hag by Combination printing. Surreal photography.