World Cup hysteria is back, and it’s not just sports fans who are excited. Meet the 11 artists and designers who have produced the best graphic designs, poster designs and illustrations inspired by this year’s tournament. Find out more about the process behind their work and discover who they predict to be crowned champions.
Name: James Taylor
After growing up in Nottingham and attending university in Florence, James now runs his own graphic design company, Pennarello Design, from New York. His recent work includes a set of alternative World Cup posters for every tournament since 1930. The collection is completed by a refreshing take on this year’s event:
“The poster had to convey the significance of a World Cup in Brazil, but I was desperate to avoid the tired clichés that are so often foisted upon the country and its football.
“The leaping figure emerges from a forest green haze and is instantly recognisable as Pele, but he’s out of focus, like a dream or distant memory. By presenting the player in this way I wanted to suggest a sense of gravitas — he represents both Brazil’s impressive World Cup pedigree and history of achievement as well as the burden of expectation no doubt felt by the current generation.”
“Argentina always seem to have the strongest team on paper, but they haven’t got past the quarter-finals in twenty-four years. I’m sure winning in Rio would provide extra satisfaction, so maybe this will be their year. As long as it’s not Spain!”
Name: Marcos Vilela Behrens
Marcos Vilela Behrens entered a competition for the chance to have his World Cup 2014 poster as the official design for Rio de Janeiro, one of the host cities. Unfortunately he didn’t win but we think his poster is well worthy of our shortlist:
“This poster represents and gesture of faith and cheering portrait by a hand holding a “fitinha do Senhor do Bonfim” which is a brazilian symbol of believing and faith. This is a gesture done by every Brazilian when they are hoping for something great to happen.
“The shape of this hand also reminds the shape of the World Cup Trophy which is a way to say that these conquests are at hand.”
Prediction: Germany or Argentina
“My prediction for the winner of the world cup is Germany or Argentina. Brazil has a really, really, really bad team, actually the worst team I’ve ever seen.”
Name: Lea Harangozova
Just as Pele was immediately recognisable in James Taylor’s poster, it seems obvious that he was also the model for Lea Harangozova’s design. She uses innovative techniques to bring energy to the image and also in her logo design which features at the beginning of the article:
“This logo design and poster were part of a senior thesis project that I completed during my studies. The designs are part of a large branding project for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
“All design elements in the logo and poster are hand-crafted, ripped pieces of colored paper and hand-cut typography. I wanted to use vibrant colors to capture the rich culture of Brazil. The ripped paper emphasizes the speed and power of the sport of football.”
“I predict that Germany will win this year. I would love to see Germany and Brazil battle it out in the final match.”
Name: Pablo Alejandro Gomez
Pablo Alejandro Gomez’s collection of graphic designs brilliantly invoke the spirit of this year’s World Cup. They’re simplistic in execution but are omplete with details that sum up modern football. The obligatory iPod, over-sized headphones, flashy coloured boots and branded sports drinks are very true to the sport in 2014. Pablo has gone to the effort of creating detailed designs for all of the teams competing at the world cup this year; even the referees. His description of the project is true to his simplistic style:
“This is a personal project I completed for this year’s world cup. I decided to work in a minimalist style called Flat Design.”
“I love football and I play a lot too. My favourite players are Messi, Iniesta, Di Maria, Lampard and Özil. This year I want to see Argentina as the champions, but as a second option I would choose France.”
Name: Antonio Rodriguez Jr
Antonio Rodriguez Jr works with different styles and techniques, from handmade to computer-generated graphics. His body of work includes projects in typography, lettering, sculpture, crafts and branding. His World Cup 2014 poster design below is a part of a project which demonstrates his skills illustration.
“A widely renowned sports company (particularly known for their shoes) asked me to work on an illustration about the next World Cup.
I liked the results and then did a few more. For the obvious reasons, the one I did for them is not featured in this project.
“The original idea was to use photography. However, as it was meant be printed in t-shirts, the best option was to do it by hand.
“The colour was added digitally in order to make it easier to customise the drawings according to the team’s official outfit colours.”
“Here in Brazil something like 80% of population (including myself) expect Brazil to not even get to the semi-finals. I’d love England to win, but I believe it’s going to be Spain again.”
Name: Francesca D’Ottavi
Francesca D’Ottavi has recently had a lot of success producing graphic designs for various sporting events and took inspiration from the World Cup for this cover design. Her solution is visually stunning and very clever. The finished design proves that it pays to do your homework:
“Various publications have recently asked me to illustrate some of their sport cover editions. I found this experience so interesting as an illustrator that I wanted to challenge myself in doing something about the upcoming Fifa World Cup. I love the athletic gesture, the pre-match tension, the defeat and victory and in general the players’ body dynamics.
“I wanted only to highlight the physical power, together to the ancient roots of Brazilian people.”
“I only can say “May the best team win!” (probably Spain?)…Otherwise, of course…..”Go Italy!””
Name: Giannis Sideris
Giannis Sideris has produced a great set of World Cup 2014 Posters featuring the best players on show in Brazil this year. Very diplomatically, he has chosen one from every nation involved:
“Every nation has a leader. He is the player, who in the toughest times, will carry the ball and score the important goal. He will make the hard last minute tackling or save the ball from the nets like a superhero. He wears his shirt with honor, giving 100% and inspire the others for the win.
“My project was about honoring these types of players, the national heroes.”
Prediction: Germany or Argentina
“My country is playing in the World Cup, which is a great success by itself. Ten years after we won, in amazingly way, the European Nations Cup I hope to make a similar surprise. But, I am realistic and I believe that either Germany or Argentina will be World Cup Winners.”
Name: Jon Rogers
Similarly to Giannis, Jon Rogers has created posters featuring who he believes to be the best players from every country at the World Cup this year. Unsurprisingly, both designers featured players are different – as are their predictions.
“I started the World Cup project just before Christmas last year as a way to engage with the global soccer community, mainly because I live in a soccer backwater here in Canada. As a young man I lived in London, next to The Valley, on Floyd Road in Charlton. That feeling of closeness to the game has never left me, even being this far from the reality of it. This project is was really a way to seek out that proximity again.”
Jon’s Prediction: Spain
“I would love to see the Brazilians win it at home, but believe the Spanish will once again come out on top. As a spectator with no rooting interest in the competition (Canada’s only qualification was in 1986), I would love to see an exciting attacking-minded tournament this year unlike 4 years ago in South Africa.”
Name: Luiz Stockler
Luiz Stockler is a animator and illustrator who was born in Brazil, grew up in Wales and now lives in London. He has received critical acclaim for his short films but unfortunately just was turned down for the chance to feature his World Cup 2014 designs in a campaign by a German magazine. We think think they’re great, however, and love Luiz’s quirky style:
“The brief was to illustrate Germany in the World Cup Finals in Brazil, without using typical patriotic German colours – black, red and yellow. So I used Brazilian colours and subtle hints at Germany i.e. Adidas three stripes and super subtle colours on the socks. The background colours reflect the Brazilian flag, with yellow scribbles to illustrate the feeling of a party atmosphere”
Luiz’s Prediction: Brazil
“Being Brazilian, I of course want us to win. I think we have a big advantage playing at home and also huge pressure to win. I think teams will find it hard to play against us on home soil. If we don’t win, there’s a big risk of pandemonium accross the country. Fingers crossed we don’t let the nation down.
“Failing victory for Brazil, I would like to see Uruguay do well, I’m a Liverpool fan so I have to back up Luis Suarez on this one, they’re a great team to watch!”
Name: Manu Faves
Graffiti artist, Manu Faves, couldn’t help himself creating some work for the world cup. Similar to some of the work above he has chosen to present the top players from the tournament in his signature style with their footballing attributes next to their character. Be sure to check out his other profiles including a very athletic looking Wayne Rooney.
“Im an artist from Southern California and Mexico (San Diego/Tijuana) who is influenced by two very distinct cultures and have been in the art scene for more than 10 years.
“My work is based on various situations, social problems or people that can be presented in a more cartoony and friendly manner. Most of my murals intend to make an impact in areas where art is not easily accesible and where the context of the city does not provide any kind of visual stimulation.
“As an former architect I found that making illustrations and murals can make a much faster (and at times much better) impact on a city instead of waiting months or even years for something to be constructed.
“My work is heavily influenced by various artist some known like Picasso and Van Gogh, some not so famous like Mike Mignola, Tim Sale, and Joe Mad. Comics, Graffiti, Social Problems, Sports, Heavy lines, Pop art, Greaser Culture, Cafe Racers, and Manga are some of the themes Irecur to.”
Manu’s Prediction: Brazil or Spain
“This World Cup is going to be intense there are many dark horses that can and will swift the course and make it difficult for the top contenders.
“Countries like Croatia, Honduras, Mexico, Japan, and Cameroon have very good squads, and although my heart will always be with Mexico I believe the winner this time will be either Brazil or Spain.”
Name: Paula Santana
Paula Santana has created some great visuals to accompany the games. She has bucked the current typography trend and focused strongly on the iconography of images to represent each country as they square up to each other ahead of kick-off:
“My idea was just to create visual advertising with the less amount of words as possible, letting the understanding of the ads to be made through the interpretation of the iconic drawings solely. I tried to get the general ideas people have about countries and place then as characters that would be facing each other with the info about the time of date of the match printed along with the world cup logo. That’s it, just a fun, silly, creative exercise.”
“My prediction for world cup? I have only one: Brazil. Not only because I’m a born and raised Brazilian, but because Brazil has always a real chance of winning. We won last year’s Confederation Cup, we are the only 5 times champion and we are always on the top 5 best soccer teams in the world. And because winning at home in 2014 would be ‘something’.”
Fourth place – Germany (2 points)
Third place – Brazil (2.5 points)
Second place – Argentina (3 points)
But Leading the pack with 3.5 points, the champions of the World Cup 2014 will be Spain!
Are you keen to learn the skills to create posters as good as these? Why not take a look at the online BA (Hons) Graphic Design course from the University of Hertfordshire. All Art and Design programmes are delivered to you 100% online through IDI study, allowing you to manage your education around your other commitments.