Racing fans this is for you. The animation below from Le Cube is about the legendary Formula One driver Ayrton Senna made specifically for the Olympic Games in Brazil. Beautiful Fluid animation paired with a story about winning, and overcoming obstacles. This has such a great look to it, really, really nice work. As Le Cube said, “If you want to take a peep into our souls in one of our projects, this is it. This is the kind of project for which Le Cube exists.” and it shows. When you are given the opportunity to work on a project like this, you pull out all the stops.
PARAFUSO A+ has created the opening sequence for the GP Brazil 2013 race. The animated short captures the magic of a little boy’s imagination as he plays with his toy cars. As they race around the toy speedway, the cars transform through each major iteration of Formula One car design. This opening sequence features really nice 3D animation combined with virtual camera work and post production that helps sell the excitement of Formula One racing. Great Stuff.
The last post in this series was of Wolfgang von Trips, in a late 1950’s Ferrari. In the post I talked a bit about the book “The Limit” and it’s focus on the rivalry between fellow teammates von Trips and American Phil Hill. This is an image of Hill from the same period. I felt it was fitting to have the drivers in similar era cars, since they were friends as well as rivals on team Ferrari.
In 1961 Phil Hill won the Monza Grand Prix, the first Grand Prix win for an American driver in nearly forty years. In the same race his rival and friend Wolfgang von Trips was killed in a violent accident that claimed the lives of 14 spectators as well. The victory for Hill was bittersweet, and two years later he would leave Ferrari after 6 years of service to join ATS a team founded by ex Ferrari engineers. Two years later he joined the Cooper team where he lasted until 1967 when he retired from Formula 1 all together.
By the time I was old enough to get excited about auto racing, Team Lotus had become the media darling of the moment. With the introduction of the Lotus 49, they had successfully transformed the design of Formula 1 cars to what would become the basic design base used even today. Yes the technology has improved light years since the mid 60’s, but the transition from front mounted to rear mounted engines was huge.
My memories of auto racing in the late 60’s and early 70’s can be summed up like this; “All races were between Mario Andretti, and Jackie Stewart. All the cars in the race are a Lotus 49, although the colors are vary.” It’s kind of like memories of football games. They all have the Green Bay Packers playing what ever team, and it’s snowing.
The image below is a Lotus 49, piloted by Jim Clark at the 1967 Dutch Grand Prix. I never saw the race. If I had my memory of it would be so vague it wouldn’t mean anything, since I would have been 5 and a half. The race was watched by 80,000 spectators under over cast skies at Zandvoort in Holland. In my image, Jim Clark races under sunny skies, past a crowd of none. He doesn’t have a care in the world as he moves out at 165 miles per hour away from the pack.
The second image is one of the reference photos I pulled before starting this paining. Take a good look at that photo and take note of what is missing. That’s right seat belts. As late as 1967/68 seat belts were not required on racing cars that were averaging 160 miles per hour.
I started a new project a couple of days back. Over the next 4 weeks I am creating a series of illustrations based on classic motor sports. All of the paintings are being created in the ArtRage app. The process takes pencil sketches that are scanned, transferred to the iPad, imported to ArtRage and used as a reference layer.
I’m not sure what I’m going to do with these at the end of the month. I do know that this is a great exercise, and I’ll have some work to add to my portfolio when I’m done. As I complete each image, I’ll be posting them here, with complete set being posted when I’m finished.
I have always been fascinated with the graphic elements on racing cars. Especially vintage racing cars from the 60’s and 70’s before massive product sponsorship trumped any sense of style with a gigantic marketing message. Gestalten has a new release coming out that is available for pre-order on Amazon. “Go Faster The Graphic Design of Racing Cars“, by Sven Voelker. and I am thinking this might be the next book I add to my collection.
Fast cars, anarchy, and graphic design collide on the pages of this book as it chronicles the history of race car graphics and the design behind them. Most people don’t know that racing giants from the likes of Porsche, Ferrari, Maserati, and Lotus developed their looks not by marketing strategists or graphic designers. In the early days it was by chance.
Go Faster is a collection of over one hundred examples of racing car design that documents the carefree racing world where they were created. Go Faster not only takes its readers on a breakneck ride through images of racing history, but each colorful racing car is featured next to a blank white model. The model shows the lines and shape of the vehicle in its unadorned state. This side by side placement helps the viewer see exactly how the graphics modulate the look of the car. And it gives plenty of room for the viewer to imagine their own possibilities for graphic design in motor sports.
In the book you can see how stripes, colors, logos, and numbers combine to help the car stand out from all others on the track as they go by at top speed.
The time and effort invested in the graphic looks of the race cars is a strange juxtaposition compared to the aerodynamic shape of the bodywork created by the engineer for car. But it is precisely this amateur quality, this anarchy and randomness that results in the irresistible attraction that racing cars and their graphics have on us.
Author Sven Voelker is a car enthusiast and graphic designer in Berlin. He is responsible for the global corporate design of the Suzuki Motor Corporation and other clients.