Bringing Terry the Tiger Home

Bringing Terry back to Eamonn Deacy Park was very important to me. I have two young kids and I understand first hand how much joy children get out of mascots and novelty costumes in general. My daughter LOVES Barney, a love bordering on obsession. The early years of childhood are the most influential in building a child’s personality. As children our favourite books, shows, and characters form who we will grow to be. Eamonn Deacy Park is a very special venue. A safe friendly environment in which fans of all ages can enjoy and share a love for soccer. I knew moving forward as a community club Terry the Tiger had to be part of the Terryland experience once again!

I approached the club early in the season and presented a plan to bring Terry back! The club agreed enthusiastically and I was given the go ahead to search for the perfect company to take on the job. Mascot manufacturers across GB and Ireland sent in tenures for this special commission, but I had a favourite early on. Frenzy Creative a Manchester based company had a strong track record and an excellent team of artists. They also had previous experience in the League of Ireland having produced Shamrock Rovers Hooperman. On top of that their extremely competitive pricing and enthusiasm for the project made them an obvious choice.

To start things off we needed a design. I wanted as much as possible to honour the previous incarnation of Terry the Tiger. I knew from the beginning I wanted this to be an evolution of the Tiger we loved not a complete redesign. The starting point for this project would be the Terry the Tiger Illustration I created during the 2011 season. At the time it was designed to closely resemble the costume but with a modern more youthfull look. It was commissioned to be used on Galway United merchandise and promotional materials and has featured extensively since that season. 

My first task at hand was to turn a flat 2-dimensional drawing into a detailed 3-dimensional turnaround that would work as a blueprint for the creative team at Frenzy to use. The initial draft of the turnaround retained all of the characteristics of the original illustration but the proportions were stretched to suit an adult wearers body shape. There were also subtle changes to the eyes, mouth whiskers and body. The colour palette for the new Terry the Tiger mascot was taken straight from the original costume. Amber fur with cream accents and brown stripes. 

We knew from the offset figuring out the placement of the all important tiger stripes would take time. During this stage of design Frenzy produced there own detailed 3-D renders of the costume and a few versions later we agreed on the following approved design. Frenzy’s wealth of design experience was invaluable at this stage and their designers helped bring real life to Terry’s design.

I couldn’t be happier with our new improved Terry the Tiger, I hope he brings pride and joy to Galway United fans for years to come. I am truly honoured to have played a small part in maintaining the legacy of our striped compatriot. A sincere thank you to the team at Frenzy Creative and to the following individuals whom without their help Terry would still be on his holidays abroad. First and foremost Francis Kelly as well as Tom Cox of ICE Group, John Flannery, Donnie Farragher, Stephen Madden and Mike Daly.

Photo: Sean Ryan

Photo: Steve Alfred

Original Article as appears in Maroon View Issue 11