Shadad, known by his Twitter handle @ForzaMundial, is the creator of the popular Twitter page @ElasticoFX. They are a designing page creating posters, lock screens and wallpapers etc. of the biggest players and teams of the game. @ElasticoFX have racked up 10k followers since being formed in November 2015. Shadad controls the admin duties of the page including selecting new designers whilst also designing himself. I spoke to him to find out more about this exciting project.
What gave you the idea to form @ElasticoFX?
"Ah, the idea of ElasticoFX wasn’t mine. A fellow designer suggested that we should create a designing page as he really liked my designs and felt that we could work well together. The idea of ElasticoFX."
Did you create it to display your own designs or have you always planned to have a network of designers contributing?
"It was initially a page of two people showcasing our designs, however, my partner had to leave the page due to him having less time, therefore it was me by myself. I couldn't cope on my own as we used to receive plenty of requests so I decided to bring in some more people."
How do you select your designers?
"Obviously, one of the lead admins for a page of 10,000 followers means that we have a higher and much more different than we had a few months ago. Previously, we looked for people who could do basic designs, but now because of improved demand and the required standard, we look for designers who are talented, have versatility in their designs and are clean and are able to design regularly."
What is your favourite design you have created?
"I’ve made plenty of designs, and I do have quite a few favourites."
What is your favourite design created by someone else for @ElasticoFX?
"I’m quite grateful to be working alongside some really talented designers, but my favourite has to be this by @K23Dez on Twitter. He is an incredibly talented designer."
Which of the designs have gained the most popularity?
"We’ve had loads of tweets which have gained a lot of popularity. The most RT’d was the kit concept I did in collaboration with @CechThis (Cech him out, great designer)."
Which other editors do you admire?
"There are so many designers I admire. First one has to be @CechThis. Super editor, and the reason I got into editing in the first place. @Lagvilava7 is another. He is arguably the best editor on Twitter, no surprise to see his work has been noticed by Ozil (three times!) and Alexis Sanchez. @Marayu9 is also one of the very best. A very talented designer, getting her work on websites like goal.com. Other designers are @GFX_7, @DanDigital, @RZR_GFX, @lmaosimon, @K23Dez, @Morenology, @MARK_WH1TE, @WorldClass and everyone who is part of ElasticoFX. Also, I’d like to mention, @OID__, probably the most significant member of the page for what he has done. He set a standard for his versatility but also his attitude. He has managed to secure deals with huge pages which have enabled us to grow. Constantly brimming with new ideas, and has helped design the unbelievable layout for our page. Has revolutionised EFX. I know I’m forgetting some people, but I really admire more than the people I’ve listed. Everyone is unique in their own way and have a very strong point in different ways. (I know I’m forgetting some people), but I really admire more than the people I’ve listed. Everyone is unique in their own way and have a very strong point in different ways."
Do you intend to expand @ElasticoFX? If so, into what and how?
"Yes, I and my fellow ElasticoFX members do intend to expand the page. We have recently opened a new Instagram and Facebook page. The Facebook page has 100 likes and the Instagram page has over 400 followers. We hope we can gain some stability on those platforms. Also, a new high-quality website is on its way which would include exclusives for designs, information and tutorials."
My comment: "ElasticoFX is really a standout for me on Twitter. Bringing together a network of great designers into one gives us to view all the best edits in one place as well as see the most talented designers link up. I highly recommend you follow them @ElasticoFX."
Henry Rowe, or @HenryCreative_ on Twitter, is an aspiring digital artist at the age of 16. He is renowned for his minimalist art and his work has featured on @MinimalistFooty. He is now doing work for a verified page on Twitter and is hoping to secure more deals in the future with professional clubs/brands.
How did you get into graphic design?
"My passion for design originally started at the age of 14, where I took graphics for GCSE. Initially, I contemplated dropping the subject four weeks in, but my parents convinced me not to. Since then, I haven’t looked back."
How did MinimalistFooty approach you?
"They approached me via Twitter DM, nothing fancy! @lmaosimon was the one who asked me but I believe @jackhoimes was the instigator of it all."
What other pages does your work feature on?
"My work features on other pages such as @EddictsFX and my Behance profile. I also used to co-run an old football design account by the name of FootballFX with several other designers (shoutout to the boys @Tbdesign_ and @NxDzn) but that account deactivate."
What is your favourite design?
"My favourite design definitely has to be my Andy Carroll overhead kick one. I particularly enjoyed it because I made my first ever sale on that product so it will always have a special place in my heart for that reason. I also liked it in general, despite it being Andy Carroll – grr."
Which of your designs has gained the most attention?
"I don’t usually check up on my designs but I am going to guess that it was, in fact, my Andy Carroll illustration. Either that or my Marco Reus one. Actually, come to think of it, my Paul Anderson design was actually noticed by the player himself, not sure about the club, though."
How do you make yourself unique from other artists like you?
"I guess it’s kind of hard to be intentionally unique in the style that I mostly perform. I guess it all just comes with how you see it really. I know several different people that have several different styles of shading and when you ask how they do it they’ll just all reply with ‘pen tool to trace the shadows!'"
Which designers inspire you?
"There’s so many so I’ll just have to name a few. @jackhoimes firstly just because he’s a great kid and works for his favourite club, Norwich. @MarcelGraphics also because he’s just so, so good, plus he’s only 15 as well! I probably won’t be able to explain all so I’ll just list a few; @ZekeDesign, @JcoleDZN and finally @DanielHardman. There’s so much more out there, though!"
What have you learnt as a designer?
"As a designer, I’ve learnt just to not give up essentially. I read your interview with Dan and I just guess this is kinda similar to his but patience in all is just so key to whatever type of design you want to do. I think it doesn’t just apply to graphic design when I say that ‘giving up is you telling yourself you have failed’."
My comment: "Henry is one of the top minimalist artists. In an area with a lot of competitors, he is certainly one of the top and I recommend Henry to anyone out there. It was a joy to speak to him and learn his ambitions. Make sure you follow him @HenryCreative_."
Dan, known as his twitter handle @DanielHardman, is a designer who’s work features on MinimalistFooty and CechMyEdits, as well as clubs like Everton, Southampton and Northampton. His work has attracted fans who continuously ask what he does, and so read on to find out more about what Dan does.
What sort of designs do you do?
"I do minimalist and vector illustrations, depending on how much detail I need to do."
How did you get into doing these designs?
"I got into doing these designs through @lmaosimon. I took inspiration from him and started to experiment on MS Paint and then, eventually, onto Photoshop."
When and how did MinimalistFooty and CechMyEdits approach you?
"I approached MinimalistFooty back in October 2015, however, I got turned down by @lmaosimon so I decided to create my own page called MinimalistEdits. I improved massively and then @jackhoimes approached me in January 2016 and I signed for them."
"I also approached Cech My Edits in the summer of 2016 as I had spare time and got accepted by @CechThis because of my work for MinimalistFooty."
What work do you do for professional clubs, and how did the approach you?
"At MinimalistFooty, we contacted a plethora of clubs and Southampton, Everton and Northampton were those to get back. We do social media work for all three and we get featured in the match day programmes for Northampton and Southampton."
Has your work featured anywhere else?
"My work has been featured and spoken about on the Mark Forrest Show on BBC and I’ve also opened my own shop on Etsy."
What is your favourite design you have made?
"My favourite design is probably this one of Jamie Vardy as featured on @CechMyEdits."
Which of your designs has gained the most popularity?
"Probably my most retweeted design on MinimalistFooty had to be Pogba dabbing for Juventus."
What have you learnt as a designer?
"I’ve learnt to be patient. To produce the best type of work, you have to be patient and take your time with illustrations."
"I’d like to give a huge shoutout to @mesutismagic, @lmaosimon, @cechthis, @jackhoimes, @morenology, @mark_wh1te, @dandigital, @cottodesign."
My comment: "Dan's art is seriously something impressive. Finding out how Dan became the minimalist designer was an interesting conversation and I'd recommend Dan to anyone out there. Make sure you follow Dan @DanielHardman."
_JEdits_ is one of Twitter’s rising football graphic designers. The current 15-year-old had set up his Twitter profile after taking inspiration off F_Edits and DesignFootyIG and since has learnt the skills in Photoshop and gained over 2000 followers within the 6 months. His designs caught my eye and so I spoke to him to find out more about what it is like.
There are many football edit accounts on Twitter with a tonne of followers, so how do you aim to replicate these?
"I need to keep going forward and working hard. I also need to keep my fans happy."
At the age of 15, are you learning graphic design at school or just practising on Photoshop?
"I’m really just practising on Photoshop as my school doesn’t provide that. However, if the opportunity comes in the future then sure!"
How do you work in the way of when do you post edits, and which images do you choose to edit and why. Is it for a particular event or just something to freshen your timeline?
"Usually, I do edits of pictures during that week. I mostly do mobile wallpapers, so when I find an image, I look at its size and quality. I usually get my images from @footballinhqs (great account!)"
Including F_Edits and DesignFootyIG, do any other editors inspire you?
@F_Edits – "The main reason I started doing edits. Such an inspiration to me and he’s so talented."
@DesignFootyIG – "Another one of my inspirations, I love his style."
@ledits__ - "He has such a clean style of making his edits, I love it."
@FootballDesign5 – "Similar to me in editing, great guy, and he’s very supportive."
@Rzr_Gfx – "Great account and he is very talented."
@daviesdesign_ - "Good editing account on the rise."
@GFX_7 – "One of the best out there, he is amazing."
@Lagvilava7 – "Underrated designers, very talented guy."
"And also not to forget @drogbanger, @marcelgraphics, @CechThis and @footygraphs."
What is your favourite edit you have made?
"I have a few, but my favourite has to be my Eden Hazard edit with Pedro behind him."
So far, what is the proudest moment from your Twitter account?
"Well, one of my favourite players, N’Golo Kante retweeted my edit, but I wasn’t too proud of the design. But one that has gained attention is my Cristiano Ronaldo edit with him holding the Euro trophy on his head."
How would you like to take _JEdits_ to the next level? Is there a job you aspire for or a website/shop you aim to start?
"To be honest, I’m not looking to turn this into a job. I really do this as a hobby. But if the opportunity came up, I’d surely think about it."
What have you learnt as a designer?
"Just to be original, creative and very unique!"
My comment: "_JEdits_ has certainly come up with fabulous designs in the 6 months that he's been on Twitter. It's great to see why he began his account as he wanted to be like his inspirations. Keep an eye out for him by making sure you give him a follow."
Fredrik, known by his Twitter handle @F_Edits, is one of the most followed editors on Twitter. In a short space of time, he has grown from a few thousand followers to 40k, and his work has caught the eye of professional players like Gareth Bale and Harry Kane. At the young age of 18, Fredrik has plenty of time to get even better. I spoke to Fredrik to find out more about his journey.
I’d like to know about how you started. What made you want to do these edits and how did you advance to what you are today?
"I've always had a desire to make thing; being creative and original, and I've always had a passion and high interest for football as well, so combining those two was easy.
It started August 2015, back then I was pretty new to Photoshop and didn't know many techniques or tricks, but I've worked hard and used Photoshop daily since that day and feel like I have learned a lot."
When you made your Twitter profile, did you intend to make the edits as a hobby or to break into the world of graphics?
"I just did it as a hobby; I thought it could be a fun thing to do, never even dreamt of being this 'big' or having the success I’ve had so far. It's very cliché to say that 'I never thought I would get big,' but I genuinely didn’t, remember thinking to myself, 'If you work hard, you can maybe get a couple of thousand followers after 1 year'. After 1 year I got 29 thousand, and I feel very lucky."
What is your favourite edit you have made?
"There isn't a particular one, but I have a Twitter moment with some of my best." - View moment here
You have worked on a lot of projects, like your recent advent calendar edits, but what has been your favourite project to work on?
"I love doing those types of project/threads. It’s very fun but challenging. It's very hard to pick out one favourite but it is either my latest calendar thread (view here) or my countdown for the Euro 2016 (view here)."
Which other football edits accounts do you admire?
There are a lot of accounts I really admire and that inspire me. It isn't possible to name them all but here are some:
@FootyGraphic - "Great designer and person. Done a lot of collaboration with him as well. He has a very bright and nice style that I like."
@DesignFootyIG - "The first design account that I followed I think. We started our twitter accounts around about the same time, so he’s like 'been with me from the start'. I've done a lot of collaborations with him as well and I love every one. Talented lad!"
@Lagvilava7 – "One of the very best."
@marayu9 – "She’s one of the very best designers out there! I really envy her brilliant style. Very underrated."
@EmilioSansolini – "Just stunning! All I have to say. He has some very smart and brilliant work."
@BarcaArt_ - "One of the accounts that have inspired me the most."
@UKILFC - "So simple and so annoyingly good!"
@lbertGFX – "His typography is second to none. Has a clean style that I absolute love. One of the best designers."
"I’ve probably forgot a lot, but as said there is many good football edits accounts out there. @GFX_7, @GraphicHunters_, @dianqamajaya, @ArsenalRealm, @emranovic7, @DanDigitaI @HannahCDesigns and more."
Since starting your account on the 9th August 2015, you have reached 40k followers with such speed. How did it feel to see many people impressed with your work?
"It was amazing. It's really hard to explain or put words to it. Not just the numbers, but how quick I’ve got them and the support and feedback I’m getting."
Professional players, like Bale and Kane to name a few, have used your edits. How did such an achievement feel?
"How I 'work' is that I make an edit of a player and post it. Usually tagging official player or related fan accounts. Its always fun when players interact or use the edits but its not something I expect. It’s a bit of a shot in the dark because those big players have probably a lot of notifications, so I would say my chances of being seen is small. But, I remember quite clearly the surprise when players of that size, Harry Kane and Gareth Bale used my edits. Its was amazing because not only did the see it, they liked it enough to use it as profile pictures."
I understand that you now design the profile of Harry Kane’s social accounts. Describe your reaction when you were approached by his agent.
"It’s filled me with so much happiness. I was stunned, seeing a professional agent contacting me. I started it all just as a hobby, so getting things like that is a very big surprise. I feel honoured and proud, and it’s not only because of my edits but all those people that have shared my work. I’m very very thankful for my supportive followers. It’s very motivating and I can't wait to get more deals like this in the future."
Do you intend to become a graphic designer as a career, or will you continue this as a hobby?
"Yes I do intend to become a graphic designer. I love to create thing, so having a career in that would be a big dream."
My comment: "It was great to speak to Fredrik who was so polite and informative. It was intriguing to find out more about his rise to one of Twitter's most iconic football graphic designers in such a short space of time. Make sure you follow him at @F_Edits and also check out his new website at f-edits.com."