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Coming from the art: behind the cover artwork

He is responsible for wrapping industry-leading songs with his unique design. Meet Ayo Space, another creative Jamaican talent


Romeo Nelson, wrapping industry-leading songs with his unique design


An integral part of the extensive Jamaican music industry, especially in the streaming era is the cover artwork for each riddim or single. Every song that is uploaded to certain streaming platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, Audiomack and others, have been wrapped with its unique design, and so the demand for graphic designers, who play an important part in the industry, has increased substantially.


One of those talented graphic designers who is known as the one generating the cover artwork for some of the leading songs in the dancehall, is Romeo Nelson, better known as Ayo Space.


The 20-year-old talented youth, hails from Kingston, growing from a humble abode; he honed his craft as a true creative when he met his mentor who encouraged him to be the best and gave him the best advice yet "neat typography and good placement."


Nelson idolizes each work as something that needs to be different from the others. "Cover artworks to me are of the utmost importance. It's a unique way of storytelling, capturing every detail and every line of a song or the artistes' lyrics and fitting it into a frame in Photoshop, creating something that will unequivocally stand out distinctly from the rest.", he explained.


"seeing 'Speed Off' Cover on trending streaming platforms, I must say it was a proud moment for me"


It requires him to be creative and to come up with many different ideas. "My concepts are original. Just lock in the space and let the creativity flow. Usually, the lyrical content of the song steers the creative process of the cover art", he revealed.


Known for his cover art designs for top songs like "Speed Off" by dancehall rising star, Valiant, "Fearless" and "Spiritual Warfare" by Chronic Law, "Racks" and "Cash Ready" by dancehall newcomers Kraff and Topmann respectively, Nelson has received good reactions from his industry colleagues.


"I've been collaborating with a lot of the best in the industry: Dj Mac, Dethworld Records, Zimi Records, Collect Di Bread Ent, Sulfa G, and YGF Records just to name a few. The reactions from the industry players are good", he said. "most of the time dem jus sen the song and leave the rest to me", the young talent explained the fact that they simply trust his work. "My greatest experience or the feel-good moment for me so far is seeing 'Speed Off' Cover on streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music trending, I must say it was a proud moment for me", he expressed.


"Mi dream collab was Law Boss and mi gone like 7 Law Boss now so mi grateful"

When he started working in business, he dreamed of working with Chronic Law. "Mi dream collab was Law Boss and mi gone like 7 Law Boss now so mi grateful. But mi would love to work with Tommy Lee Sparta or Vybz Kartel", the Kingstonian youth concluded.

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