Interview with Vincent DiGerlando

The Man who created the Kiss Army logo

As I wrote in the intro for the the Dennis Woloch interview I have always been fascinated by all the design done for Kiss in the 70′s and 80′s. A time that everything Kiss related seemed to be real quality stuff when It came to design. I have always thought everything was done by Dennis Woloch. But I was wrong. So I must admit I have been wrong all the times I have been asked who made the Kiss Army logo. It wasn’t Dennis Woloch, It was Vincent DiGerlando.

It’s really cool to be able to present a new person in Kisstory. At least for me. The first time I heard about him was when Dennis Woloch mentioned him in the interview I did with him earlier this year. So It’s a pleasure to present Vincent DeGarlando who worked for Howard Marks Advertising as an Art Director.

Q. Please tell us a little about your background before you started working at Howard Marks Advertising.

Donʼt know how far back youʼd like me to go, but in retrospect, art and music have always been a part of my life. I was inspired by an artistic uncle, had an Italian mother that would sing to me, and my brother, and sister, also had an aunt that became a well known opera singer.

I grew up in a neighbourhood where doo wop groups such as the Plurals, and Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons were discovered. Did a lot of drawing, and painting during my early childhood while being encouraged by my grade school art teacher, who suggested that I attend Arts High School of Music and Art. After high school/college I had jobs in small studios, creating ads, working on magazine designs, creating some logos/letterheads, and doing a few illustrations.

Q. Did you know Dennis Woloch before you started at Howard Marks?

I first met and befriended Dennis Woloch in grade school. We both were fairly good artist, accomplished enough to pass the tests to be accepted in to Arts High School in Newark NJ, as well as have exceptional portfolios to get into Pratt Institute, in Brooklyn NY. Continue reading

Exciting auction – Signed Creatures print proofs

One of a kind artwork

Vincent DiGerlando who worked with Dennis Woloch on many Kiss related projects for Howard Marks Advertising in the 70′s and 80′s, has put up an really exciting auction for “The only existing set of 6 proofs each SIGNED by Dennis Woloch the art director, and designer of many early KISS albums, and promotional items, as well as designer of the album ‘Creatures of the Night’”.

The set includes a set of 6 of these very proofs from 1982, (this set of 6 includes a bonus yellow with magenta proof sheet) indicating each color, and the final album cover, all signed by Dennis Woloch.

See the eBay auction here (the auction is over)

Interview with Dennis Woloch

The design wizard

Ever since I since I discovered Kiss in the 70′s, the design and packaging of the albums and merchandise have always fascinated me. And the ‘magic world’ of illustrations and typography It showed me had a lot to do with my own choices later in my working life. So It’s a real pleasure to be able to publish this interview I have done with the Kiss design ‘mastermind’ in the 70′s and 80′s, Dennis Woloch. It’s a dream I have had since I read the great interview he did with the ‘Kiss This’ fanzine in the beginning of the 90′s. And thank you very much Dennis for being to willing to answer these questions. You have made my day.

Q. Tell us a little about your background and what kind of work you did for you did for Howard Marks before you started working with Kiss.

I was the Art Director at Howard Marks Advertising in New York for 22 years. Eventually I became the VP/ Creative Director.
As an art director, my job is to come up with concepts for the project at hand, then design it and do the layout. If the job calls for an illustration or photograph, it’s the art director’s job to select the right person for that particular project. You bring it to life.

Some of our clients were Wall Street firms, Women’s shampoo, Cosmetics and Diaper Services (they competed with disposable diapers) So my experience and challenges were all over the place. We also had a greeting card Company (American Greetings) for a client. We did a large project which used pop star music celebrities, their photos and lyrics to some of their music on posters and greeting cards. I was getting experience in showbiz. We had so many projects and clients that I could not remember 5 percent of what we did in those days. We were busy. Continue reading

Bob Gruen – Rock Seen

Incredible Photography

This is really not a review but a little note about a photo book all classic rock fans should have. The book is really not a Kiss book, even if It’s a Kiss related. But I just have to mention the book since It is absolutely awesome.

Bob Gruen is the photographer that have more or less photographed most rock stars that deserves a picture. He was part of the rock scene in New York in the 70′s and have documented the scene thoroughly. For us Kiss fans he is mostly known as the photographer that shoot the famous Dressed To Kiss picture. But he was also present from the beginning of 1974 through the 70′s.

For us Kiss fans the book contains the Dressed To Kill picture, DTK outtake, pictures from the Creem cartoon written by Sean Delaney, picture from Nagoya 1977 and live shots from the Love Gun tour. There are also some cool Kiss pictures in photo montages throughout the book.

The book is also filled with incredible pictures from the famous John Lennon “New York City” photo, to pictures of The New York Dolls, The Ramones, The Clash and on and on. Buy It!

Verdict: 10/10

Ken Kelly signed prints

Prints of some of the most iconic Kiss covers

Since I have written about both the Michael Doret and Victor Stabin prints. I thought I should write about the Ken Kelly prints I also have.

Ken Kelly has prints for sale of both the Destroyer cover painting, the Love Gun painting, what is supposed to be the first version of the Destroyer cover and the Gods Of Thunder cover, that he painted for the Norwegian Kiss tribute record.

There are different versions of the prints. The cheapest ones are photos (8×10),  limited edition prints  (22×22) and giclee prints  (24″x24).

The ones I have are the limited edition prints. And the quality is about what you would expect for around $50. The paper seem like ordinary poster quality. The colors are a little dark compared to the versions we are used to. But I have never seen the originals so It’s difficult to say how true to the originals they are. On the “Gods Of Thunder” cover the colors are really “off”, and has to much cyan in it compared to the original painting . But all my prints are still in the plastic wrapping so all of them would probably look much better when I get them framed. The one who looks has the most viberant colors is the “brown Destroyer” painting. But I have never seen another version of It so It so difficult to tell how that’s compared to the original. Maybe I one day will buy one of the giclee prints. So I can tell how the quality is on those. But we will just have to wait and see. If anyone has one, please tell me and send pictures. Continue reading

Michael Doret – fine art Kiss prints

Great artist and nice person…

Over the years I have come in contact with a lot off “Kiss related” people. And I must just say first that Michael Doret is one of the coolest of them all.

When I first heard that Michael was supposed to design for the Sonic Boom cover I was really pleased. Rock and Roll Over has for me always been the pinnacle of Kiss covers. I was more or less sure that he would make something brilliant for for the new record. And I was right, the Sonic Boom cover was brilliant. I really like the cover, even if the opinions about it the cover were really divided in the “Kiss world”.

Michael Doret also mentioned in interviews that he wanted to release Limited Collector’s Edition print’s of both the Sonic Boom and Rock And Roll Over covers (250 of each). So already then I said to myself that I at least had to have one of them when I could afford them. As usual I started to promote them on the front page of Kiss Army Norway, as all other Kiss stuff I find cool.

Just before they were about to be released I also found out that Michael also sold original press profs of the RARO cover that he had received from the printers in 1976. So I just had to buy one of those. I also hyped the press prof a little on the Kiss Army Norway forums because I thought the print was so cool.

Suddenly I get an email from Michael because there was something wrong with the postage for the press prof. He also asked me if I knew why he had received so many orders from Norway. So I told him It probably was because I hyped his stuff on our site. He was really grateful and that started a long mail discussion about Kiss and design in general. I think most of his work with design and fonts are really great. So he wanted to give me a silkscreen print of one of his signed posters as a gift. And I picked the “Powerstation” signed silkscreen print. A really cool print. Continue reading