Vinyl Art, Judas Priest and Rosław Szaybo


Written by @olsonwells


Rosław Szaybo

I came across a recent purchase of Judas Priest’s Sin after Sin while browsing through the piles of vinyl sleeves that lie round our house (yes, in ordered piles and on shelves).

Metalheads love this sort of music, and I’m not sure where my taste lies yet in that regard, but I sure do LOVE the vinyl cover art by Rosław Szaybo (allegedly).

Sometimes referred to as packaging, sometimes art direction, the design skill that this artist employs is focussed, heavy and mythical!

I did some research (more than Wikipedia) and found out these FAQs about Rosław Szaybo and the album creation:

Rosław Szaybo

  • Polish and still alive apparently. Born 1933, he would have been a perfect age to capitalise on commercial opportunities for bands needing trained painters, photographers and/or cover designers (which he was all three).
  • Moved to the UK in 1966 and worked at Young and Rubicam freelance while building his contacts.
  • 1972 – CBS chief artistic director. Designed OVER 2000 covers, mostly for classical music (see, there is always a connection!), but also for Santana and The Clash.
  • Also designed Judas Priest’s British Steel album cover art
  • What is he doing now? See this Blabbermouth article – still rocking hard in cover art design
  • According to, Roslav assigned Royal College of Art 1975 graduate Bob Carlos-Clarke to design the cover. Probably the art director/designer studio collab, the result is usually signed off with Szaybo’s name so dont want to offend anyone, just love the album and relying on research which may not be correct.

Judas Priest’s – Sin After Sin (1977) vinyl art

Features Szaybo’s own drawing as well as the John Pasche-designed gothic logo from their previous label release.

Features the light/dark shadow aspect, night sky with hidden mood and egyptian temple with the album title carved into the rock. Heavy Metal indeed! The gorgeous female figure at the right bottom is silhouetted, perhaps waiting to be initiated – or sacrificed – inside the pillars of the temple shown. Very evocative.

What’s your take on the cover? Jump on our blog and create your own after responding to my blog 🙂 Betty

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