words Al Woods
If you’ve ever witnessed one of Lionel Messi’s twisting, daring runs and blistering goals, you’ll know he’s one of the world’s most creative players. He is an artist on the field, and now, perhaps one of the greatest football players of our time, has been given the chance to get creative off the pitch as well.
As part of Pepsi’s LOVE IT. LIVE IT. FOOTBALL campaign, he’s been working with a local artist from his home country to be a part of a global project that promotes the universal effect that art has around the world.
Altogether, five players were chosen to collaborate, including world renowned Brazilian defender Marcelo, three-time UEFA Champions League winner and German midfielder, Toni Kroos, US two-time Women’s Best Player of the Year Carli Lloyd and our very own rising star of English football Dele Alli.
Every artist was matched with a player from their home country — Diego Jimenez (aka DIYE) from Argentina, Bicicleta Sem Freio from Brazil, Dennis Schuster (aka DXTR) from Germany, Kim Sielbeck from the US, and Iain Macarthur from the UK. They worked closely their respective foorballer with the task of designing their own graphic and visual interpretation of their player’s story.
Internationally respected photographer, Danny Clinch provided the photographic canvas for each artwork. The resulting overlays were designed to illustrate the creative flair of each artist and the spirit and style of the players. The final product takes on several different formats and is featured across broadcast, billboards and print outlets around the world.
Because Danny is more accustomed to photographing the world’s greatest musical artists, working with renowned football stars made this a great opportunity and challenge for him.
“They are actually very similar. In both cases it’s about capturing larger than life personalities. But whether you’re taking a portrait or shooting them in action, photographing an athlete or a musician, it’s all about the moment.”
Each image captures the player’s irrepressible character while also serving as a unique and iconic project for Pepsi. It was an enjoyable one for Danny, as well.
“It’s been very exciting to work with Pepsi on this project. Capturing an athlete who’s made a difference in people’s lives is important, and I loved that sentiment of the art and the document of history combined together. I also truly enjoy collaboration, so to create a portrait that another artist can contribute to is an incredible opportunity.”
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