Epic Confusion

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The second rush gig which capped off an epic week of little sleep was the cover for this past week’s Week In Review. Working with Kelly Doe for a fast few hours before jumping on a plane, the article describes the new modern arc of the superathlete a la Lance Armstrong, A-Rod, Lebron James, etc., and how the public’s perception of heroic athletic feats has changed from a sense of awe and aspiration to one of justifiable skepticism. Michael Sokolove kinda, sorta nails it in his opening:

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The notion of looking up to the sports hero was always dubious. Now? Forget it. The new definition of a sports hero is someone whom we don’t yet have enough information on. 

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This one happened so quickly that, in a rare, borderline miraculous feat, we were able to get a concept approved over the phone without preliminary sketches. I’ve heard tell of this feat done with other, far more seasoned designers who contribute to the Times, but being the searching, second-guessing soul that I am, it’s rare that I’m ever so comfortable committing to an idea first before trying to work it out on paper first, so this was a new one on me. Once the idea was approved, I had a few hours to obsess over how best to render it. The other version that we tried out which didn’t make the cut uses a torn paper conceit which I will absolutely hold onto for when the right assignment comes around. The sculpture won’t carry over but I’ll be sitting on those shreds of discarded paper like a mother hen.

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