The original draft design for the 'Rubber Soul' album cover lettering,
1965, in light brown gouache on paper, mounted with a copy of the album cover, sold with background details, paper approximately 12 x 15cm (4¾ x 6in)
In October 1965 photographer Robert Freeman contacted graphic designer Charles Front, the vendor of this lot, and asked if he could design the lettering for the Beatles' forthcoming album. The proposed title of the album suggested to Front the image of a globule of latex or other viscous substance being pulled downwards as if by the force of gravity (mirroring the distortion in Freeman's photograph). This gradually formed into the now-familiar stylised shape. Into this he introduced the two words of the title.
This design, with Freeman's photograph, was shown to Brian Epstein and arrangements were made to meet the group as soon as possible for their opinion. During a recording break at Abbey Road, the cover concept was shown to the Beatles and it was readily approved. The designer then produced a second version of the lettering to be used for the cover production. This was essentially the same as the first but with very slight and subtle modifications to the letterforms themselves and to the spaces in and around them.
'Rubber Soul' was released on 3rd December 1965, coinciding with the first date of what would turn out to be the group's final UK tour. Musically and lyrically the album was the group's most ambitious recording, heralding as it did a new phase in the Beatles' career and a foretaste of what was to follow.