The world is mourning the death of legendary rockstar David Bowie, who died Sunday after an 18-month battle with cancer, two days after his 69th birthday. Now, an animated GIF that depicts the Starman’s ever-changing appearance throughout his five-decade career is becoming one of the most widely shared tributes on social media.
The animation was created by U.K. artist Helen Green in honor of Bowie’s 68th birthday in 2015. It is composed of 29 different drawings and took 35 hours to complete. In a post on Bowie’s official Facebook page, Green spoke about what influenced her to illustrate the GIF. “It’s become somewhat of a tradition for me to create something to celebrate David Bowie’s birthday – a little token of appreciation for someone that has inspired me so much over the years,” she said. “It was quite a triumph to see all 29 drawings in motion for the first time.”
Social media erupted with messages of mourning for Bowie, including from several of his contemporaries and peers in the music industry.