Animated Play

Soccer Mural, Mike Senese

I’ve updated my Aston Villa post to include an account of Sunday’s game against Tottenham, so go back and check it out.  But today I wanted to highlight some amazing football-related art, in particular some animation.

On the high(er) art end of things, there’s the amazing work of Richard Swarbrick.  Though he has also done some nice work on cricket and, more recently, for the NBA Finals, his sports animation is most closely linked to football.

Gareth Bale’s remarkable performance in the 2010-11 Champions League against Inter Milan and Barcelona’s decimation of Real Madrid in the first of the four Classicos that season (my personal favorite) each commemorate the highlights of a specific game.

More recently, he’s focused on specific moments, such as Rooney’s bicycle goal in the Manchester derby or Maradona’s 2nd goal against England in the ’86 World Cup, or montages commemorating Euro 2012 (in a very interesting string animation) and Messi’s four consecutive Ballon d’Ors.  But if you’re only checking out one piece here, don’t miss this “Moments in Football” zoetrope-style animation.  It’s magical and lovely, as all animation should be.

But when you’re stoopid, you can’t stand on pomp and ceremony.  Great animation comes in all shapes and sizes, and on all budgets.  Etoilec 1 Officiel may lack the production value of Swarbrick’s work, but animation with the thumbs still showing has a magic all its own.  Don’t sell a man and his flipbooks short.  (Click on the image below for links to his flipbooks of Messi, Ronaldinho, and Cristiano Ronaldo, helpfully collected by World Soccer Talk)


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