Immediately following the New York Marathon, Nike created a popup experience in Chelsea targeting “non-runners” — New Yorkers who wouldn’t call themselves runners per se, but still lead active lifestyles. Fresh blood for the Nike Run Club. I was tasked with designing a non-runner’s guidebook. As someone who often fantasizes about early morning runs through the park while running late to sit at a desk all day, I didn’t need a bunch of data to empathize with the target demographic. I could totally trust my gut.
With that blind confidence and only five days to produce a 68 page book, I started designing from feelings. The sneaking feeling I got when I went running that I was a dumpster fire of a person who sucked at all sports flailing all over the city streets. But also the feeling of empowerment that comes with going out and doing it anyway. My goal for this book was to show non-runners, even people who hate running, that they have a place at Nike’s cool kids table.
To that end, I quite literally turned the world of running “upside down” with the cover photo and made unexpected choices throughout the book to attract attention. This book needed to cut through the noise of the usual Nike branding and feel like it was speaking directly to non-athletes. I capitalized on the natural tension between pink and green as complementary colors to create a bold, gritty “non-runners” visual identity that still harmonized with Nike Run Club’s current sleek lime green branding. I was also inspired by the streets of New York and the way the traffic signs and road markings always feel like they’re guiding and pushing me to run just a little further. Paint splatters reflect the feeling of chaotic excitement I associate with both running and the city — always slightly out of control, slightly more exhilarating than is probably safe.
CLIENT Nike Run Club New York, NY
AGENCY Sprint Step
One week in October 2019