Animation production company Golden Wolf has created a new film for Nike charting the evolution of the brand’s trainers and football boots. Created using CGI, 3D scans and original photography, it features over 200 pairs of shoes from the 1970s to the present day…
The film was commissioned as part of Nike’s Genealogy of Innovation campaign and was released on social media. Earlier this year, the brand launched a book, website and exhibition charting the development of its shoes from a 1971 football boot to current models, the Magista and Mercurial Superfly.
The website defines six key ‘chapters’ of Nike history: Genesis (1971-94); Reformation (1995-8), Golden Years (1999-2002), Enlightenment (2003-6), Renaissance (2007-10), Transformation (2011-13) and Revolution (2014).
Golden Wolf was asked to create an animation to convey each era and developed a two-minute spot made up of seven different films. Each has a distinct look and feel, representing the aesthetics of the period or the technology that defined Nike shoes made at the time:
The first chapter, Genesis, features images of early Nike shoes against photos of stadiums, urban streets and playing fields, with each background representing the intended use for the shoe pictured. Visuals have a vintage, aged feel, reminiscent of Super 8 film, and backgrounds were shot at locations in London, Portland, New York and Amsterdam.
In Reformation, trainers are arranged against bold blues, greens and pinks, while the final instalment, Revolution, uses laser like strands to reflect Nike’s flyknit technology. In Golden Balls, football boots are pictured alongside CG balls and shapes.
“The [Genealogy of Innovation] website presents a family tree of Nike shoes and how they connect – how tech from one shoe will be used to build another. The purpose of the film was to show that evolution and journey from A to B,” explains creative director Ingi Erlingsson.
“Nike had scanned every one of their key shoes for the website, so they gave us these assets and asked us to figure out a way of displaying them that would tell their story. It was very important for each era to have a different narrative,” he adds.
As well as impressive visuals, the film features some great sound design by Bristol studio Echoic Audio. Sound changes with each chapter to reflect the relevant time period, but each track flows seamlessly into the next.
“The plan wasn’t originally to create wholly different films [for each era], so the biggest challenge was putting something together that had all these different approaches,” explains Erlingsson. “It was like managing six projects in one,” he adds.