Longtime Iron Maiden Artist Derek Riggs Talks Iron Maiden Artwork

[Press Release]

Longtime Iron Maiden album cover artist DEREK RIGGS recently spoke with MetalSucks correspondent Justin Foley about the work he did for the legendary UK band. Riggs spoke about the inspiration behind his art, its evolution over time, and the tenuous relationship he had with the band's management that eventually resulted in his walking away. An excerpt follows:

What I’ve read says that you ended things with Iron Maiden and walked away. This has included giving them Eddie without further claims on it. How do you look on that decision?

Well, it probably wasn’t the smartest business decision, but I didn’t really care. I couldn’t work with their management, and I still can’t really. At that point, it just became too painful to keep doing it. I’d had enough. There was so much bullshit around Fear of the Dark. I just said, “Forget it, I’ve had enough.” I mean, they gave me some money. But the rights to the character haven’t been bought or sold — so that’s still all floating out there. But the bottom line was that I’d had enough of doing it. Fuck it. And I wasn’t going to be doing anything else with Eddie, so why not let them have it?

You could have held it hostage, right? Weren’t you leaving money on the table by not being an asshole?

Well, I’ve done a few paintings for them since then.
[See the commentary on Riggs' site on Flight 666 - Ed.] But they asked me to sign another contract with them. Initially it looked all right, but then I thought the better of it. Look, you can have an art director who wants to see six different versions of something because he’s ten years old. But I can already tell you — “That’s not going to work.” Fucking around with different options… when I tell you it won’t work, it won’t work. And I got into artwork to do good artwork, not to satisfy an arti director by making boring crap.

Really, I’ve done zombies. At this point, it’s like, “How do you want your zombie? Would you like him with a burning city behind him or with lightning? Do you want him boiled or fried?” [laughs]

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