nike matt gorbet






In November 1995, I worked on a project with Dave Small, designing a visualisation system for Nike.

The system enables users to pick up an actual Nike shoe, and, moving it around in space in front of them, they could witness a representation of the shoe moving in 3D on a computer screen. The graphics are drawn using a unique, real-time artistic renderer, developed by Rolf Rando who started a company with his technology called ThinkFish.

Click on the screen shots above to see full-size jpeg versions...

Using this visualization system, we were able to add several dimensions to the standard Nike shoe:

  • The artistic rendering styles can enhance the feeling of energy and motion inherent in Nike's designs
  • Using a stylus, designers can virtually "draw" in 3D, right onto the shoe model or the last, the mould that Nike uses to represent feet in their design process
  • The model is annotated with typography that is arranged in space to highlight some of the features of the shoe.
  • Animation of video frames can be played in the "background"
  • Putting the shoe down on the table leaves "virtual footprints" of the shoe's unique and colourful sole design
Possible uses for the Nike system include design, product development, and on-site marketing.