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The Beatles Yellow Submarine Capsule by Vans

January 30, 2014by Aaron Kr.
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The Beatles have permeated nearly every imaginable nook and cranny of popular culture, and even fifty years after their legendary first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, their music and the iconic imagery associated with the band are still as omnipresent and relevant as they’ve ever been. With an ever-growing fanbase of devoted diehards to appease, providing Beatles-centric merchandise and memorabilia has always been a vast and profitable enterprise. The band’s likenesses, logos, and album art have graced everything from t-shirts to gallery art to mugs and keychains, but curiously, it took until 2014 to finally make their way onto a sneaker.

If you think about it, there’s really only one brand that jumps out as the logical partner for a project like this. Not only did Vans come of age during the same ’60s era as The Beatles, but their ties to rebellious music and the culture around it goes back just as far. Vans has already done capsules honoring legendary artists like Metallica, Kiss, AC/DC and countless others, and their timeless silhouettes offer wearable options to a wide demographic of consumers. The perfect fit was in place, but then came the difficult decision of choosing a concept from the crowded pool of possibilities.


The Yellow Submarine album was The Beatles’ tenth studio release, but more significantly, the 1968 film it played soundtrack to was one of the band’s most groundbreaking endeavors and supplied a flood of lasting visual reference points. Years before there was an MTV, the Fab 4 were already revolutionizing the notion of music videos with their full-length animated epic and the lush psychedelic artwork that it’s best remembered for. The innovative film brought an air of sophistication to animation as an artform, proving that it could be a tool for beautiful expression and wasn’t limited to just cartoons for children.

This March, Vans will honor The Beatles and the imagery of Yellow Submarine with a colorful four-shoe capsule featuring intricate artwork taken directly from the movie screen. Each shoe in the collection references a recognizable scene from the film on the uppers with additional Yellow Submarine graphics found on the woven labels and footbeds, as well as the special edition packaging. It may have taken a long while to come to fruition, but it’s safe to say that Vans absolutely nailed it in terms of capturing the vibrant essence of its subject and staying true to something that’s so revered by so many. Keep reading for a closer look at all four shoes and keep an eye out at Vans retailers in the near future.


THE BEATLES YELLOW SUBMARINE x VANS SK8-HI REISSUE


As we’ve seen in the past, the large canvas walls of the Vans Sk8-Hi makes for a perfect canvas for applying involved graphic spreads. For the Yellow Submarine edition of the Sk8-Hi Reissue, Vans took the opportunity to capture the well known watercolor-


style psychedelic portraits that appear in the film and put each band member’s face on a different quarter panel with an accompanying full body caricature featured alongside as you pan down towards the midfoot sections.


THE BEATLES YELLOW SUBMARINE x VANS ERA


Like the Sk8-Hi and most of Vans’ canvas upper offerings, the Vans Era usually lends itself very well to prints and graphic treatments. For its appearance in the Yellow Submarine collection, the Era


makes one of the louder visual statements, finding itself completely covered in a yellow-based all-over print featuring a classic still of The Beatles marching along through lush landscapes and colors.


THE BEATLES YELLOW SUBMARINE x VANS SLIP-ON


Based on a famous scene in Yellow Submarine known as the “Sea of Monsters”, the Vans Slip-On serves as the backdrop for another great psychedelic snapshot featuring a trippy school of fish swimming across a sea of lavender canvas.


Perhaps it was just a lucky coincidence, but we’d like to think that this particular screen grab was specifically chosen for its checker-like sections and the obvious tie back to the Slip-On’s staple print.


THE BEATLES YELLOW SUBMARINE x VANS AUTHENTIC


In by far the capsule’s most blatant reference to a specific song, the Vans Authentic reminds us that “All You Need is Love”, directly applying the font style from a famous scene where the phrase fills the entire sky in gradual repeating fashion.


For a Beatles twist on the Authentic, the universally recognized lyrics are sprawled out in an all-over print that covers the entirety of the shoe with the exception of the Yellow Submarine-branded tongue label.