In every NBA season players transform themselves from scratch into legends. It’s usually skills on the court propelling these athletes forward, but now certain players are literally growing from nothing on paper.
That’s the idea behind ESPN’s latest NBA playoffs digital video, depicting artistic renditions of Golden State Warriors stars Steph Curry, Andrew Bogut, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
The 90-second video (below), titled “Golden Vision,” features a striking time-lapse of artist Heather Rooney’s impeccable hand drawings of the Warriors stars, all done over the course of approximately 14 days using colored pencils. ESPN Radio’s Ryen Russillo narrates the video (see sidebar).
“We wanted to create different ways to promote some of the NBA playoff contenders this year,” said Michael Giblin, associate writer and producer at ESPN Marketing. “We had seen some of [Rooney’s] remarkable illustrations of Leo Messi and James Rodriguez online during the World Cup, and always wanted to work with her on a project. The Warriors were an ideal team for her to illustrate based off of their ‘picturesque’ season on the court.”
Front Row spoke with 21-year old Rooney, who is finishing her senior year at Emmanuel College in Boston, Mass., about being having her work showcased on ESPN.
What was it like to be approached by ESPN with this project and to see your work on ESPN.com?
It was a big honor for me. I enjoy drawing sports figures so this was a very fun project for me.
How much of a basketball fan are you?
I am a basketball fan but I enjoy a few different teams in the NBA. I like the Golden State Warriors because the people I have met when visiting the Bay Area are so friendly. I also follow the Washington Wizards because my brother works for that team. Living in Florida for 15 years, I have also followed the Miami Heat.
How long did it take to create the portraits? Which one was the easiest and the hardest?
It took me about two full weeks to complete the drawing. The hardest figures were probably Steph Curry and Draymond Green, since they had the most facial expression. I also needed to make sure that I drew Draymond’s tattoo design correctly.
Editor’s Note: The New Orleans Pelicans visit the Golden State Warriors in their Western Confernce first-round playoff opener Saturday (3:30 p.m. ET on ABC, ESPN Radio and ESPN3). Visit ESPN MediaZone for complete NBA on ESPN programming information.