By Phil Hecken, with Rob Holecko
I got a very interesting e-mail from Rob Holecko (He of the GUD/BUD/DUD uniform database fame) this week — the results of a very long back-and-forth of which Rob will describe below. But here’s the gist: we’re having a new design-a-uniform *contest* on Uni Watch, but not one the likes of which we’ve ever had before. Once the concepts are submitted, there could be much more that can be done. Confused?
Before I go any further, I want to explain that today we’re calling on all the concepters and designers to come up with a whole mess of uniforms for a non-existent league — there are a few parameters, but most of what we’re asking for will be original design concepts — so it’s a chance for everyone who loves to participate in Uni Watch design contests to really show off their chops. At this point, I’ll let Rob describe our plan so far, and I’ll be back with some final thoughts and deadlines after that. Here’s Rob:
Calling All Designers — It’s Uniform Design Time Again
I’ve been working with Phil recently to setup a new project which I hope will possibly grow beyond this initial contest into an exciting recurring weekend feature here at Uni Watch. First off we are announcing the latest Uni Watch Design Contest. Below I will being introducing twelve fictional football franchises that once upon a time competed in a real fantasy football league, which I realize is an oxymoron.
All that we have for these teams is a name, a helmet and maybe a few other brief details. For the purposes of this contest we are asking you to design a complete look for these teams. Full uniform sets — home, away, and alts — as well as wordmarks, a full graphical identity. Pretend that you are presenting a portfolio trying to get hired as the graphical designer for one (or all twelve) of these teams. Submit your concepts and Phil will put them into Flickr sets and we’ll let the UW faithful vote on their favorites. You can enter concepts for as many of these teams you want, just one or all twelve.
Now the second, more on-going part of this is project is where the real fun can come in. It’s up to you guys to decide what we’ll do with these concepts. We’ll revist it this after we have winners chosen, and we’ll discuss it more in-depth after we gauge the interest of everybody.
We have a couple ideas in mind. Perhaps we’ll take the twelve winning concepts and let you set up an actual fantasy football league with them. Once upon a time I was interested in following the box scores and keeping up with who the Tennessee Titans’ third string wide receiver was, and possibly there are twelve uniwatchers who would like to set up a draft and run their own league with teams wearing Uni Watch-contest winning uniforms. If so, we’ll follow along with the results and cheer on the teams here in Uni Watch. It’ll be the best dressed fantasy football league ever.
I, however, had something a little more radical in mind: We could take the twelve winning concepts and play “fantasy” football, but Uni Watch style. Instead of the teams drafting NFL players and scoring points based off of their real-life football performance, the teams would “compete” with each other by you Uni Watchers voting for the combos head-to-head each week. The teams will have wins and losses based on the voting results, and the winning teams will go on to the playoffs and compete for the Uni Watch Uniform Design Championship Trophy. The teams that are voted the worst and finish in last place will be in danger of being replaced in the league by new concepts and expansion teams that you all will have the opportunity to create down the road.
Tell us in the comments what you think of either of these ideas. Or maybe you have an even a better idea of what we could do with these teams and the winning uniforms — if so tell us. If we gauge enough interest we’ll undertake one of these as an on-going Uni Watch feature. Let us know what you think.
In the mean time, get to work on your concepts for these twelve fictional franchises, and Phil will set up Flickr sets and in a few weeks we’ll votes on the entries and choose the twelve winning concepts.
You can email submissions to Phil to be considered.
Good luck, and happy concepting!
Everyone got that? For now, everyone who wants to design one (or all twelve) of those franchises — the whole kit and kaboodle (helmet, home, road & alt unis, socks, etc.) — just adopt the name of one of those franchises Rob posted above. Then send your submission(s) to me, using the subject line: “Fantasy Football Uniform Design Contest”. Those can be in any format (except photoshop .psd — if you design your uniforms in photoshop, please send them to me as a .jpg or .png or similar). You can also send them as Adobe .pdf files. One team at a time or all twelve — that’s your choice. Depending upon the number of entries, I’ll keep this contest open until we have at least 12 separate teams covered — if there are multiple submissions for the same franchise, we’ll put those to a vote. The main thing is just to get cracking.
Once we’ve created the fantasy teams, as Rob mentioned, we can explore interest in taking this further. This should be a really fun one, so designers, sharpen your pencils and fire up the Macs — let your imagination run wild! You basically have a blank palette and canvas — so show us what you can do!
If anyone has any additional suggestions or concerns, you can contact me (or Rob Holecko) directly, or post your thoughts in the comments down below — either way — we want to hear from you!
Rip, Rip, Rip, for the Home Team…
Now, that’s not normally big news (nor unprecedented), and shortly after that, Robinson returned to the game wearing a new blank jersey. What is interesting is that this is not the first jersey malfunction Michigan has suffered this season.
In fact, back in January, FOUR players ripped jerseys in a game against Minnesota. Reader Gordon Fall noted that after today’s jersey malfunction: “Rachel Nichols reported that Michigan’s regular blue jerseys were severely ripped up in a game against Wisconsin, to the point that Michigan will be wearing ‘last year’s’ blue jerseys for the rest of the tournament. Considering that Michigan is a #4 seed, odds are that Michigan will be wearing blue from here on out.”
Yes, assuming Kansas takes care of business today against #8 UNC (not necessarily a given), then Michigan’s next game would have them in blue. Last year’s blue. Otherwise, they’d be wearing white again next weekend.
[Thanks to reader Britton Thomas for the screen grabs]
RIP Sugar Ray
Bit of sad news came out of the NBA world yesterday, as we learned of the passing of Ray Williams, who captained the Knicks a couple decades ago (and played on the Celtics and Nets, plus bounced around a couple other teams, and was a Golden Gopher in college). It was the tragic end to a sad story, as Williams might be more popularly remembered (particularly by you younger guys and gals) as guy who became homeless and was living out of 1992 Buick. But in his prime, he was great.
There was a very good story written a couple years back on Williams’ plight. Take a moment to read that; it will give you some perspective. Williams was 58 when he passed, having succumbed to colon cancer.
RIP Sugar Ray. We hardly knew ye.
Jim Vilk remembers…
One of the things keeping Mr. 5 & 1 himself, Jim Vilk, from UW, has been his interest in other things. One of those things is DIY Lego projects — like this one. If that appears a little fuzzy, it’s not you. But one of those figures (it’s an NBA set) is this guy — Ray Williams. Jim had made him part of a set of NBA greats. I’m not quite sure why he’s wearing a Nets jersey (although Sugar did drop 52 on the Pistons back in the day, so maybe that’s why). We’ll have more on Jim’s DIY down the line too.
Occasionally, I will be featuring wonderful, high-quality black and white photographs that are just begging to be colorized.
Back today with a smaller (but no less impressive) set from two of our regulars, Pete Woychick (with one) and George Chilvers, who has a pair.
Click on each image to enlarge.
We begin today with Pete who has a colorization, and as always, a great back story:
Maybe everyone already knew this, but once I learned the back story of this photo, I had to colorize it. Pardon me while I geek out:
Saturday, August 24, 1940. Detroit at Boston for a double-header. Trailing 11–1 after seven innings and needing to save a few arms for the second game, the Red Sox turned to their lanky left-fielder for mop-up duty. That’s right—Teddy (Bleepin’) Ballgame! Williams pitched respectably, allowing 3 hits and a run in two innings of relief. It was the only pitching appearance of his major league career. Williams’ battery-mate that day, Joe Glenn, was also the man who caught Babe Ruth’s final pitching appearance—a complete game win on the final day of the 1933 regular season!
DET 12, BOS 1 (8/24/40)
NYY 6, BOS 5 (10/1/33)
How cool is that? And on top of that, how cool is it that there’s photo evidence?
And George is up with the next two:
This picture dates back to 1 April 1911, and shows England scoring a goal against the “Auld Enemy”, Scotland at Goodison Park in Liverpool, the home of Everton.
I really like this picture seeing the enthusiasm of the fans celebrating England’s goal. The game ended a 1-1 draw.
One Uni-notable point is that the English Football Association at the time provided shirts for the players, but they had to provide their own shorts and socks. Most wore their club socks, which explains why they do not all have the same socks.
Mind the gap as you step from George’s Amazing Colourising Time Traveller. You have landed in 1914 and a view of the almost new Highbury as Woolwich Arsenal in the red shirts (resurrected a few seasons ago for an anniversary as “redcurrant”) host a, for them rare, Second Division fixture against Fulham.
The stand hasn’t yet had the club name written on it, and you will note with wonder how high the roof is above the stand which is open to the elements from both front and back. Only a few tarpaulin signs protect the paying patrons’ backs.
Another trip will be organised soon. Book now.
That’s it for today. Thanks to Pete and George for their superior, as always, efforts. Lets keep those colorizations coming Uni Watchers!
We have another new set of tweaks, er…concepts today. After discussion with a number of readers, it’s probably more apropos to call most of the reader submissions “concepts” rather than tweaks. So that’s that.
So if you’ve concept for any sport, or just a tweak or wholesale revision, send them my way.
Please do try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per image — if you have three uniform concepts in one image, then obviously, you can go a little over, but no novels, OK? OK!. You guys have usually been good with keeping the descriptions pretty short, and I thank you for that.
Like the colorizations, I’m going to run these as inline pics — click on each one to enlarge.
And so, lets begin:
We begin today with Walter Helfer, who brings forth an excellent new name/logo for UND:
This is an identity I created for the University of North Dakota. While I’m sympathetic to an aggrieved people not wanting to be some school’s mascot, I wanted to use a piece of Indian design that’s been important to me. The triangle motif at the bottom incorporates symbol of the thunderbird footprint.
Next up is Noah H., with a new uni & name for the Seattle hoops club:
I know that Seattle is planning on going back to the SuperSonics name when the Kings move, but I thought this pun was too good to pass up. It keeps the royalty motif in the franchise while making the name distinctively Seattle. The jersey is not very good; I had no advanced software to create it. I kept the crown from the Kings logo as the dot for the ‘I’ in ‘Reign’.
We close today with Mark Lilley with some Broncos tweaks:
The Broncos have gone back to using Orange as their Home jersey, but their road jerseys are sorely lacking in carrying over the predominantly Orange color. I’ve done a quick rendering of how I think they should remedy this. (You can see the current road jerseys in the background players.) The current road uniforms with the predominant blue made sense when the home jerseys were blue, but now they don’t make any sense. Broncos fans on the road wear orange to support, but the team doesn’t on the field. This is brand disconnect.
Family season ticket holder since 1962
And that’s it for today. Back with more next time.
Happy 13th Bizkit!
That adorable little guy you see in the photo to your right is my son, “Bizkit.”
He’s turning 13 years old today (that’s a photo from his first birthday in 2001). Last year I wished him a happy 12th, and some of you may have noticed occasional “Get Well Soon Bizkit” missives from Paul at the end of a weekday post.
That’s because, in addition to contracting diabetes over a year ago — in fact, every morning and every evening, with the assistance of my Aunt, he gets injected with insulin (despite his small size, it’s a two-person job) — he suffered two strokes within the past few months. Besides his advanced age and complications (like glaucoma) brought on by the diabetes, he’s now permanently blind in one eye and walks with a slight, but detectable limp.
Honestly, I never thought he’d make it to see his lucky thirteenth. But he’s a fighter like I’ve never seen, and he continues to make improvements even after suffering from several debilitating maladies. Even though he never reads Uni Watch, he’s never complained about it either. But he’s my “little guy” and truly an inspiration. (And, just to show you how tiny he is…here’s yours truly and Bizkit — in better days for him).
So HAPPY BIRTHDAY BIZKIT. Keep on fighting little buddy — you’re an inspiration.
And that’s going to do it for today. Hope everyone is enjoying the NCAA tourney — fear not, pretty much everyone’s bracket is busted at this point. Thanks to the colorizers, concepters and Rob for his inspiration for the latest contest. And everyone join me in wishing an early birthday (it’s tomorrow) to one of Uni Watch’s most persistent commenters, THE Jeff Provo. Happy b-day, oh tormentor of us all ;).
Everyone have a great Sunday and a good week — spring is here, and one week from today, baseball starts — and all will be right with the world again.
“Phil couldn’t be wronger about the youniform cap. That is, without a doubt, the best mascot logo cap I’ve ever seen an an MLB team wear.”
–R. Scott Rogers