A baseball-flavored visual design meander

Why shouldn't a catcher's mask look like a futuristic soldier helmet?

Why shouldn't a catcher's mask look like a futuristic soldier helmet?

The Behance Network is an online bazaar trafficking in visual imagery, product design, graphic design, and all manner of effluvia. It’s a good way to survey the design scene (I’m an amateur audience, to be sure). I punched “baseball” into the search cell. Here are a few baseball-related design highlights:

– Designer Francesco Schiraldi takes a new design look at a catcher’s helmet. The flip-up visor is intriguing. Also check out his pitching machine, a War of the Worlds interpretation of that terrifying device.

– Some old-school mascot posters from Bruno Allard.

The SI cover featuring Zack Greinke offers a unique visual perspective. Add to that the World Series cover from last year, the recent Hamels and Pujols covers, and the Lincecum cover from July of 2008, and you’ve got some compelling portraiture from the old standby. Great photography seems to be the key here, with simple design. In the Hamels, Pujols and Lincecum covers, the design highlights the particular style and physical presence of the subject. It’s a keen way to capitalize on that style factor that makes baseball go.

Eschewing blatant cover cliche

Eschewing blatant cover cliche

On the topic of covers, baseball book cover designs most often include a) a player portrait or b) a large, artistic-seeming picture of a baseball. It makes sense, on one hand, and is pretty bland on the other. Now I Can Die in Peace by Bill Simmons is a notable exception (I haven’t read the book). Additional compelling cover designs of recent baseball books:

Odd Man Out by Matt McCarthy. This cover takes the action to a place just off camera, in a madcap scramble for some ball, presumably.

The Integration of Major League Baseball features a cover in the style of an old baseball card. Reminds me of the custom baseball cards mentioned in a previous post.

Lefty, Double-X, and the Kid mixes new fontiness with old portraits, to a vintage-modern effect.

On Etsy, handmade products from the masses:

A pretty sweet baseball pillow.
A decorative baseball silhouette.

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