Update: A reader at MGoBlog asked me if the title of this week’s wallpaper was a reference to Michigan Defensive Coordinator Greg Robinson’s last press conference as head coach at Syracuse. The reference was purely accidental. I had completely forgotten about that press conference, but take a look at the video clip starting at about the 0:50 mark; funny coincidence. Or is it? (It is.)
According to the official Purdue Athletics web site, “Over the years, Purdue teams had been called grangers, pumpkin-shuckers, railsplitters, cornfield sailors, blacksmiths, foundry hands and, finally, boilermakers. That last one stuck.” I’m more than just a little broken up that history stole from me the opportunity to design a “pumpkin-shuckers” wallpaper. Sigh. Instead, a replica of a Victorian-era locomotive became the official mascot of the Boilermakers in 1930 “to exemplify the engineering and agrarian heritage of Purdue.” Because nothing says “intimidation” like agrarian symbolism.
For the last two seasons Michigan fans have seen “easy wins” against Purdue devolve into soul-crushing defeats. As I anticipate next weekend’s contest, I see in my mind’s eye a damsel draped in maize, tied to train tracks, terror in her eyes. A whistle echoes from the depths of a tunnel. The tracks rumble. A small light flashes in the darkness. The damsel turns away and closes her eyes. Where is her hero? Has she no defender? No, like our 2010 team, she is defenseless. What will emerge from the tunnel? Will it be a full-size freight train that rips her into a thousand pieces, or a miniature model train that bounces harmlessly off her rope-bound body?
How it was made
I used screen capture software to record the creation of this week’s wallpaper artwork and sped up the footage to condense 4 hours of design time into just over 4 minutes of video. If you like watching paint dry, or if you want to see the Photoshop equivalent of Bob Ross ruining a perfectly good painting with a giant foreground tree, then this video is for you.