The Changing Face of the Vuelta a Espana

Everyone’s heard of the Tour de France. But the world’s most famous pro-cycling race is only one of three world ‘Grand Tours’. The other two are Italy’s Giro d’Italia and Spain’s Vuelta a Espana. It’s a gruelling 21 day cycle race around Spain.

The Vuelta is a good example of how Graphic Designers need to deal with the same event year after year, but change with the times so to stay current. It happens all of the time; we can talk about the changing face of Coca Cola, Shell and may more. But these are updates with the look of a company. This blog shows you 35 years of the changing face of the Vuelta a Espana poster.

From a design point of view, it is easy to say that one looks older than that one. That one has a more modern feel. But at a Graphic Design Studio, we have to know why that is. Is it the imagery? Is it the typeface? Is it the colours used?

Enjoy this collection of Vuelta a Espana posters, and please comment which is your most favourite and why…

1979 Vuelta a Espana

1979 Vuelta a Espana
From this point and right through the Eighties, the year remained in a multi-lined typeface. This poster which simple put is a cyclist and lots of text and company logos on a plain background, shows that design needs interest. Today this would be avoided due to too many text colours and different fonts.

1980 Vuelta a Espana

1980 Vuelta a Espana
Into the Eighties with a sketch of a group of cyclist. We still have a massive presence of sponsors – this time almost using all available space. The main cyclist here is shown wearing the leader’s Yellow Jersey.

1981 Vuelta a Espana

1981 Vuelta a Espana
This design is far tidier in its layout. Sponsors are now in neat equal sized boxes and the main image is not covered at all. The cyclists here are shown wearing various points jerseys.

1982 Vuelta a Espana

1982 Vuelta a Espana
The cyclist almost fight for space in this 1982 poster. While most sponsors do continue to have their own boxes, others are tagged on the bottom. Interesting to see some global companies here such as Iveco trucks, Hewlett Packard, Toshiba, Interflora, Coca-Cola and Sprite.

1983 Vuelta a Espana

1983 Vuelta a Espana
The cyclists achieve more room in this 1983 poster. The detail of main sketch is also more prominent. We’re still not keen however of the choice of background colour.

1984 Vuelta a Espana

1984 Vuelta a Espana
In this 1984 poster, all but the main sponsor is removed to let the image of the cyclist tell the story. That being the winner of the previous year’s Vuelta (as he is wearing number 1) and current race leader (as in the Yellow Jersey) approaching the end of a stage.

1985 Vuelta a Espana

1985 Vuelta a Espana
This poster design, again with minimal sponsorship mentioned, concentrates on the winner of a stage as he crosses the finish line However with an alternative, futuristic background.

1986 Vuelta a Espana

1986 Vuelta a Espana
An usual design for the 1986 Vuelta, with what appears to be a car tyre with white writing on the tyre wall. The writing details the length of the route, a cool 3680 kms, together with the start and finish dates and towns.

1987 Vuelta a Espana

1987 Vuelta a Espana
This is great poster with what appears to be a bunch sprint finish, following a dispatch rider who does resemble one of the guys from CHIPS. A new major sponsor for 1987, DYC Whisky.

1988 Vuelta a Espana

1988 Vuelta a Espana
This has to be our favourite Vuelta poster. If there was an eighties movie about the Vuelta a Espana, this would be the film poster! There’s just so much going on…

1989 Vuelta a Espana

1989 Vuelta a Espana
You can almost feel the wind as these rider pass you. Another new major sponsor for 1989, Aguila Pilsner.

1990 Vuelta a Espana

1990 Vuelta a Espana
Into the Nineties with a completely different direction. The 45th Edition of the Vuelta was promoted with a colourful worm. The Nineties did also see the introduction of a new logotype for the Vuelta followed by the year and Espana in smaller text between the Vuelta letters.

1991 Vuelta a Espana

1991 Vuelta a Espana
The 1990 large scale multi-coloured worm is only present in ’91 in a much smaller size. The introduction of the new logotype continues. The main image for this year is more graphic based detailing three cyclists as they speed past.

1992 Vuelta a Espana

1992 Vuelta a Espana
Keeping with the abstract images, 1992 gave us a multi-coloured outline to the rider. We also like the little character in the bottom left corner.

1993 Vuelta a Espana

1993 Vuelta a Espana
This poster saw to continuation of the lower half of the ’92 poster, but with a colourful, almost water coloured main image of 4 riders.

1994 Vuelta a Espana

1994 Vuelta a Espana
This year’s Vuelta poster produced a cartoon like main image of cyclists with oversized round bodies.

1995 Vuelta a Espana

1995 Vuelta a Espana
The word that springs to mind here is ‘Busy’. Although this is a wonderfully designed, colourful poster with a kaleidoscope feel.

1996 Vuelta a Espana

1996 Vuelta a Espana
Another abstract design for the ’96 Vuelta. This time by means of a colourful circle containing a subtle white outlined cyclist.

1997 Vuelta a Espana

1997 Vuelta a Espana
Producing a very colourful Olympic style medal ribbon feel to the main image. The cyclist are featured in silhouette and a transparent format.

1998 Vuelta a Espana

1998 Vuelta a Espana
This poster purely features a rainbow effect of two bicycle wheels. A clever design producing the impression of speed and the many countries taken part.

1999 Vuelta a Espana

1999 Vuelta a Espana
A new main sponsor and a new look for 1999. While similar in many ways to the 1998 poster, a three colour icon of a cyclist with a wraparound title is used.

2000 Vuelta a Espana

2000 Vuelta a Espana
Into the new millennium but with an old fashioned feel. Clever workings of the year ‘2000’ shaped into a bicycle.

2001 Vuelta a Espana

2001 Vuelta a Espana
The first half of the noughties saw a rebranding of the Vuelta Espana with the year set at an angle in between. This colourful image has a very arty feel to it. We particularly like the super curly handlebars!

2002 Vuelta a Espana

2002 Vuelta a Espana
Resembling a gymnastic ribbon dance, this colourful effect gives a stylish angle to the look of the 2002 poster.

2003 Vuelta a Espana

2003 Vuelta a Espana
Another ancient twist to the poster design in this 2003 version. A gold creation takes the stand this year.

2004 Vuelta a Espana

2004 Vuelta a Espana
A wonderful created water-colour type image for the 2004 poster. We love the way the image shows the speed and movement of the cyclist in a vibrant manner.

2005 Vuelta a Espana

2005 Vuelta a Espana
The latter half of the noughties saw different directions in design. This poster almost ten years old, is still very modern in design. Note the prominent red colour, sowing the seed for the change of Jersey colour to red in 2010.

2006 Vuelta a Espana

2006 Vuelta a Espana
If there was ever a Vuelta a Espana poster which represented speed and movement, it would be this 2006 version. With the prominent ’06 and silhouetted cyclist we like the power behind this design. Note the change from this year of the E in Vuelta flipped. Anyone know why?

2007 Vuelta a Espana

2007 Vuelta a Espana
We think the designers of the 2007 poster got a new version of Photoshop to create this image. Excellent use of words to build this cyclist illustration, anyone read Spanish?

2008 Vuelta a Espana

2008 Vuelta a Espana
We’re not entirely sure how many languages are mentioned on the ‘Your Tour’ montage. It does take a while to find the English ‘your’. But nice design, neither less.

2009 Vuelta a Espana

2009 Vuelta a Espana
If you’re wondering what exactly the image represents, it’s a map of Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium. Stage 1 – 3 in the Netherlands. Stage 4 The Netherland into Belgium. Then from stage 5, in Spain. This design continues with the flipped E if Vuelta and ‘Your Tour’ wording.

2010 Vuelta a Espana

2010 Vuelta a Espana
2010 marked the Vuelta’s change of leader’s jersey to red, hence the almost background image.

2011 Vuelta a Espana

2011 Vuelta a Espana
I’m sorry, but we can’t help thinking of Walls Ice Cream when we see this design.  The design, which we believe is exactly a heart, also includes the start and finish points of Benidorm and Madrid.

2012 Vuelta a Espana

2012 Vuelta a Espana
Vive Viva – loosely translated to Long Live. Red, bold and powerful in design.

2013 Vuelta a Espana

2013 Vuelta a Espana
Here is the latest (until the 2014 poster is released!) of the Vuelta a Espana posters. Clearly showing the different leader’s jerseys in this part coloured sketch design.

If you need posters or marketing material for an event, please contact IAQ Graphic Design. We can create, design, and produce electronic or printed literature for you to promote your special day. Contact us for more details.

 

 

 

 

 

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One thought on “The Changing Face of the Vuelta a Espana”

  1. 1986 isnt a car tyre, its a mash-up between a chainring and a camera lens.
    1981 is national champions jerseys (italy, france and – SA?) not points jerseys.
    2005 also note the “bull” image represented by the rider.

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