I have some work in an exhibition in Mildura coming up. I need to write a little spiel about why I "as an artist, love football and football art work". So I am going to write it here.
When I grew up on Tasmania's northwest coast, football was a big part of life. Around 1975 I started swapping football cards at primary school and the world of black and white footy replays was suddenly in colour. I think I gravitated to Richmond because they had the same colours as my hometown Burnie Tigers.These 5 pieces are all recycled designs. Four are t-shirt designs while Dustin Martin was an illustration for a book project that has been canned.
I started doing these design inspired by footy cards in 2012, for t-shirts. Footy is an emotional game and the feelings stirred by seeing your team's guernsey (and others) are strong and complex. I love being able to celebrate an overlooked or under-appreciated player. Footy art makes public the sporting passion of the artist. It could be a key moment from a big game under a turquoise sky, or a couple of your favourite players in full playing gear dropping in for tea and cake. By its nature footy art appeals to a wide audience - so it brings people together.
The illustrations are all done digitally, with some scanned textures overlaid. I haven't used watercolour texture before the book project; I was delighted with how it came up so I have brought some into the backgrounds of Sonny, Maurice and Mitch for these prints. I had them printed on high-quality paper then worked into them with coloured pencil for some extra texture and to lend uniqueness to each print. There is a limited edition of 10 of each; three of each have gone to Mildura.
If anyone is interested in one drop me a line – each print is $65 + postage unframed.
Some other footy artists
Two images above by Kate Birrell