Girls Girls Girls
So as a few of you may know, I did some work for Nike a few months ago – I went to pick up the bits of my work that were on display in their Kings Road store in Chelsea on Saturday afternoon. I thought I would write a little about the project and my time working on it, I only briefly covered it on my website so this post will be about what it was like and how it happened!
At the end of July, the month after graduation(!), the digital brand manager of Nike got in contact with me via my Instagram. I admittedly thought it was an accident because it was crazy to think that my first client who approached me after university would be Nike. A week or so afterwards, I went to their offices off Oxford Street to meet Lauren, who I had been emailing.
Lauren had told me during the meeting to create whatever I thought would be best for my own style. The brief wasn’t like anything I had previously experienced with other clients or at university, it was so open – this gave me space to design whatever I felt like. Having a feminine style already, it was perfect for the space she was wanting the work to be designed for: NikeWomen, Kings Road. Nike’s only womens only store in Europe.
I started by visiting the store to see what I could design and what could work in the space. I spent a day or so researching and getting inspiration to brainstorm what direction I wanted to take it and what kind of visuals I wanted to include in the design. Typically, I started the project off by drawing the women first. Fashion is the area I am most interested in within illustration, however, it was a change for me to be drawing sports apparel! I worked out that I wanted to draw a 3D effect gym to keep a close sporty theme, it was designed as it was so you could essentially look into it, as if it were a dolls house of sorts. I am a sucker for a good plant and I love neon lights so these were featured; I wanted to make the piece busy and energetic by adding in as many little extra details as possible while also keeping them relevant and not cluttered.
Using the layers I created for the people, the equipment and other details I mocked up lots of different variations by moving everything around… and then around again. This included everything from the layout, changing colours of details and playing around with textures. Towards the end of the project I changed the girls to all be wearing leggings / tracksuit bottoms, this was to work with the release of the new Nike Pant Studio: a collection of 7 different types of pant, each for different sport disciplines. The timing was perfect as it was even better to be able to tie my work in with the release of their new collection. I designed an alternative version, shown below, to hone in on and show some details of the original piece.
After completing the final design in October, I created a repeat pattern for in-store gift wrap for customers purchases. This was printed in three colour ways: yellow and pink, blue and pink and pink on pink. The same patterns were printed onto canvases alongside the original print. Three canvases went into each changing room in the store alongside posters that I had designed to briefly introduce myself and explain the project.
My work was displayed in store from 24th November 2017 until last week, 18th January 2018. I had a great time working on this project and I was so grateful to be able to work with Lauren and Nike. I think it will definitely be holding a special place for me being my first professional project as a graduate!